UFC light-heavyweight monarch Mauricio "Shogun" Rua is shown in the accompanying video sparring with João Gilherme Bendly, a seven-time karate champion, who does an exceptional job of mimicking Lyoto Machida's unique style.
Shogun's manager, Eduardo Alonso, shared these comments on the video with the Underground Forum:
This was training for the FIRST Machida fight, but oddly people said it was for the second. This was actually recorded around August of last year at most.
Then, answering a question about who Shogun trained with for the second match with Lyoto:
Basically the same group of people, but less repetition of what you saw there, for one thing because of his apendix and all that crazyness, and for another because strategy changed a bit and he already had lots of milage against Machida's style, so didn't need people to gimmick it as often. for the second fight it was basically Dida with pads, and Tuba doing Machida, and Glaube Feitosa doing general sparring. The other guys, including the Karate guy, weren't used no where near as much.
João Gilherme Bendly also commented to Tatame.com:
I memorized Lyoto from the top to the bottom so that I can impose myself in front of Shogun, because what he needed was the karate’s timing, the defense techniques of Lyoto. This timing is different and requires years of practice in Karate and that’s exactly what he needs. I adapted my game to Lyoto’s and did what he does in front of Shogun to do this specific training.
Before the rematch took place, Bendly lends his thoughts on Machida and the outcome:
I think that Lyoto won’t change much his style because it’s been working very well for him. You can’t change ten years of practice in four months. I guess he will still be defensive since he’s really good at it, counter attacking. He may work on this timing and be more prepared just as Shogun. But I think Shogun will win. I think it will be like the last fight, the kicks from Shogun are certain and I think this fight will be aggressive, rather than the previous one, because both need to show service.