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Steve Cofield

Evans was depressed and dreaming of a loss before Machida fight

Lyoto Machida may want to give his title belt back to the UFC. It sounds like the light heavyweight hardware screws with the guy mentally. Forrest Griffin told Cagewriter he lost his motivation and went through the motions before his loss to Rashad Evans. Evans said yesterday at the TUF 10 Media Day that he was depressed, listless and frustrated before his fight at UFC 98. It all led to a rough performance in which Evans couldn't pull the trigger and allowed Machida to dictate the pace of the fight:

"I felt weeks before the fight I was losing but there was nothing I could do about it. Something was missing but I couldn't put my finger on it. If you ever be emotionally messed up you can't really say (why), but you just want to cry. You don't know why, you just feel it inside"

Evans said he was storming out of practice after getting his butt kicked. His approach to the fight was poor and he didn't deal with the pressure of all the new responsibilities of being a headliner and champion. He was also sabotaging himself during his downtime:

"I couldn't even get any sleep. Everytime I slept, I lost in my dream. I was like '[expletive], I keep losing in my dream and I never lose in my dream.' "

Evans said he underestimated Machida and that he only gained respect for him when Machida knocked him down in the first round. Even as Evans was being finished off in the second round, he was saying to himself, "He doesn't even hit hard." He also speaks about knowing he was knocked out but also not being able to move (7:45 mark). He actually mocks himself at the end of the video.

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