vadhaḥ smṛto ’nena samudyatena kim
evaṁ bruvaṁs tv abhyapatad gadāyudho
nadan nṛsiṁhaṁ prati daitya-kuñjaraḥ
In the jungle there are sometimes fights between lions and elephants. Here the Lord appeared like a lion, and Hiraṇyakaśipu, unafraid of the Lord, attacked Him like an elephant. Generally the elephant is defeated by the lion, and therefore the comparison in this verse is appropriate.