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UFC on Fox 4: Could the Rua-Vera or Machida-Bader Winner Face Gustafsson Next?

Lyoto Machida
Lyoto MachidaRichard Wolowicz/Getty Images
Justin TateCorrespondent IAugust 3, 2012

As Shogun Rua, Brandon Vera, Lyoto Machida and Ryan Bader go into battle this Saturday, many fans and members of the media will ponder where exactly the four warriors will go when it's all over.

Depending on who wins most impressively, the Rua versus Vera winner or the Machida versus Bader winner will earn a No. 1 contender spot to face light heavyweight champion Jon Jones.

But what of the winner who is not chosen? Could there be a consolation prize to earn them the next No. 1 contender position? How about Alexander Gustafsson, the big kid without an elite name.

UFC president Dana White has recently told publications that Gustafsson is in for a "big fight." Could White have been coy about who the opponent would be because this Saturday will have the answer?

If Jones, the champion, will get the most impressive of the two winners, then it only makes sense that Gustafsson would be tested against the less-impressive winner.

A Jones versus Gustafsson match has been billed as being the last light heavyweight fight that could have some intrigue, but Gustafsson is still too unproven to be put in with a beast such as Jones.

If Gustafsson could pass the test of the winner of either Rua-Vera or Machida-Bader, he most certainly will have convinced a good deal of skeptics that he is ready to battle Jones.


For more MMA and other sports news and analysis, follow me on Twitter @justindavidtate.

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