Following every UFC and Strikeforce event, The MMA Corner will break down the event and suggest fights the promotion should make in the future. This week, our focus is on UFC on Fox 4: Shogun vs. Vera, which took place on Aug. 4 from the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

Lyoto Machida vs. Jon Jones/Dan Henderson winner

It wasn’t the main event at UFC on Fox 4, but by the time the fights were over, Lyoto Machida was the center of attention.

UFC President Dana White made an announcement days before the fight that whichever light heavyweight looked the most impressive on Saturday would be given a title shot against either Jon Jones or Dan Henderson.

Machida certainly stated his case nicely by knocking out Ryan Bader in the second round. As soon as the event concluded, White made it official that Machida will be next in line for a crack at the belt.

“The Dragon” has already faced Jones once before at UFC 140, where he was submitted in the second round. But Machida did something that no other challenger has done to Jones: win a round against him. The Brazilian won the opening round against the champion, until getting put to sleep.

Many considered Machida a serious threat to possibly dethrone “Bones,” and may have as good of a shot as anyone. Assuming Jones takes care of Henderson in September, which he should, look for Machida to step in the cage against the champion later this year.

Mauricio “Shogun” Rua vs. Alexander Gustafsson

Mauricio “Shogun” Rua’s performance on Saturday certainly wasn’t one to be down over, but he didn’t look more impressive than his fellow Brazilian.

“Shogun” didn’t appear to be his old self in his main event bout against Brandon Vera, but still managed to stop “The Truth” with a fourth-round knockout.

No shame in this win for Rua, as it gives him another victory towards regaining his belt, but it won’t get him that rematch against Jones just yet. The logical thing for the UFC to do with “Shogun” is give him another game opponent to try to get him back to the top of the heap.

Alexander Gustafsson, a rising contender hailing from Sweden, makes perfect sense.

Gustafsson recently dominated a tough Thiago Silva in his home country, and is a serious threat at 205 pounds with great height and reach.

This is a match-up that could headline or co-headline a Fox card, or could be on the same card as Jones/Henderson vs. Machida.

Brandon Vera vs. Ryan Bader

In every fight, there has to be a loser. And unfortunately for Brandon Vera and Ryan Bader, they came out on the wrong end of knockout losses on Saturday.

Fans didn’t like having “Shogun” vs. Vera as the main event, but Vera put on a solid performance that allowed him to regain some respect. Even in defeat, “The Truth” didn’t hang his head over the loss and stated that he is here to stay.

“Darth” Bader was the victim of Machida winning a title shot in the co-main event, as the former Ultimate Fighter winner walked into a right hand from the Brazilian to ruin his chances of getting a rematch against Jones. However, Bader is still young and has a chance to get back to the top 10 if he can string together a few wins.

There’s no question that a fight between Vera and Bader is going to happen. No, it’s not official, but after both lost on the same card, the UFC will match the two up to see who wants to get back on track more.

Now that fans are sold on Vera, this will be an anticipated fight that could turn into a great one.

Joe Lauzon vs. Clay Guida

Many expected Joe Lauzon vs. Jamie Varner to be a “Fight of the Night” candidate, and the two lightweights didn’t disappoint.

In one of the best fights of the year, Lauzon fought through adversity against a tough Varner to submit the former WEC champion in the third round. “J-Lau” not only got a “Fight of the Night” bonus, but also racked up “Submission of the Night,” passing Chris Lytle for the most UFC bonuses in history.

Lauzon has always been one of the top fighters in the lightweight division, but just hasn’t been able to take that next step into title contention. Some are saying that Lauzon doesn’t deserve a top-10 opponent, but he certainly does, in my opinion.

The Boston native has paid his dues, becoming one of the most exciting lightweights in the UFC. Reward the guy with someone like Clay Guida, who was in the mix before losing to Gray Maynard by split decision.

The UFC was very unhappy over Guida’s performance in that fight, which tells me that they will give a guy that will bring the fight to the Greg Jackson-trained fighter. Lauzon fits that perfectly.

This won’t be a fight to launch Lauzon into title contention immediately, but it would take him one step closer to finally making it to the top.

Mike Swick vs. Charlie Brenneman/Kyle Noke

Heartwarming. That is what describes Mike Swick’s triumphant return to the UFC on Saturday.

Swick took on DaMarques Johnson in the first main card fight, where The Ultimate Fighter 1 alum earned a second-round knockout. This was Swick’s first fight since UFC 109, a span which was a difficult time for his career.

It’s not smart to put the AKA fighter in a fight against a top-15 guy just yet, as he needs to build back up. A match-up between the winner of Charlie Brenneman and Kyle Noke is a possibility.

Both are mid-level fighters at this point, but they’re also tough and don’t give up. It’s another match-up where Swick can prove that he is truly here to stay in the UFC’s welterweight division.

Photo: Lyoto Machida (above) gets his hand raised at UFC on Fox 4 (MMAFighting)

About The Author

Corey Adams
Staff Writer

Corey Adams didn't grow up watching mixed martial arts, considering the UFC was just getting started the year he was born, but in his teenage years, witnessed the action and has fallen in love with the sport. Corey was the first to join The MMA Corner staff -- other than founder Josh Davis -- and has been writing for the site ever since. Corey attends Austin Peay State University, where he majors in Communications with a focus on journalism. When he's not covering MMA, Corey is still writing on many sports with both local and campus newspapers. His favorite sports teams are the Atlanta Braves and Denver Broncos. Follow him on Twitter at the link below.