Lyoto Machida praises Chris Weidman as the fighter has got nothing but good things to say about the reigining, defending middleweight champion.
“The Dragon”, who is a former UFC champion himself at light heavyweight, spoke to about the reigning 185-pound titlist, who defeated former champion and pound-for-pound king Anderson “The Spider” Silva.
According to Lyoto Machida, Chris Weidman’s two victories over his teammate were not flukes, despite the criticism from Anderson Silva’s fans.
“There’s no doubt he’s the champion,” Machida said through an interpreter. “He’s the best there is in the weight class right now. He won those fights. You can’t take away those merits.”
Lyoto Machida faces Chris Weidman at UFC 175 on July 5, at the Mandalay Events Center in Las Vegas. A disappointing defeat in the hands of Phil Davis urged “The Dragon” to move one weight class down. After only two fights at middleweight, he was immediately granted a title shot.
For Lyoto Machida, the UFC’s middleweight division is a more suitable weight class for him to fight at, considering the contrast in size of the opponents he faced.
“I feel like I’m fighting more guys who are actually my weight,” Machida explained. “I definitely feel faster in this weight class. I’m going up against guys the same size as me now. Before I was fighting guys much heavier.”
Before Lyoto Machida stepped in as Chris Weidman’s opponent, Vitor “The Phenom” Belfort was originally scheduled to fight for the UFC middleweight gold at UFC 173. However, due to the “Phenom’s” failure to pass the pre-fight drug test, he was forced to pull out of the fight card.
But despite these complications, Lyoto Machida still believes that Vitor Belfort should be the next in line for a shot at the 185-pound title.
“Logically, he’s next in line,” Machida simply said.