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Vitor Belfort-Lyoto Machida in the works for UFC 167

Vitor Belfort-Lyoto Machida in the works for UFC 167

Though far from official, an extremely interesting rumble is in the preliminary stages of becoming reality, as it appears UFC stars Vitor Belfort and Lyoto Machida could clash UFC 167. If booked, the bout would serve as the show’s co-headliner.

SporTV was first to report the still-developing scrap with UFC Tonight providing confirmation in terms of the targeted event.

The pairing would presumably take place at light heavyweight, Machida’s regular division, as Belfort has stated in the past he is not willing to risk his status as top middleweight contender while waiting for Chris Weidman-Anderson Silva to sort their differences out at UFC 168. However, UFC President Dana White has said he would prefer Machida to drop down to 185 pounds for the fight and “The Dragon” has agreed to do so if necessary.

Adding intrigue, Machida’s interest in battling Belfort is personal and goes back to UFC 152 when “The Phenom” wore a shirt poking fun at his Brazilian countryman’s reputation for running in the ring. On paper the pairing certainly looks good as well. Both fighters are former UFC champions with Machida boasting a 19-4 mark and Belfort’s record standing at 23-10. Each has also beaten a number of elite adversaries in the past with their combined list featuring the likes of Michael Bisping, Randy Couture, Mauricio Rua, Rashad Evans, Rich Franklin, and Dan Henderson.

UFC 167 is set to unfold in Las Vegas on November 16. The evening’s main event will pit welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre against hard-hitting grappler Johny Hendricks.

  • joe mo mma says:

    What does this fight do for either fighter? Does Machida want to dip down to 185 and potentially have to fight Silva (if he beats Vitor at MW)? and what does Vitor get if he beats Machida? Does that move Vitor up the LHW rankings in to top 5 territory?

    I understand that both of these guys are highly marketable and they will sell tickets, but as far has crossing MWs and LHWs, this is just causing too many problems IMO. If Vitor wants the MW title, shelf him and give it to him next year. Machida should be lobbying his ass off now now to fight another top 5 fighter.

  • joe mo mma says:

    Let them fight each other at 195 (like the couple fights Franklin had). If it was at catch weight and more of a “for the fans” type of fight, they wont have to dirty up their records too much in their respective divisions.

  • Mightymark says:

    I think this is a bad mach up for Vitor, lyoto will probably run around for 3 rounds then kick him in the face with 30 seconds to go.

  • MCM says:

    I agree joe mo mma. Let it be a Franklin weight fight. That’s why they made a Franklin weight anyway right? To put together interesting fights that would sell without screwing up the rankings?


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