Former UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida, who also contended for the title at middleweight, has not been seen in the cage since June of 2015, when he was smashed to a third-round TKO by the ever-dangerous Yoel Romero. The reason for the former champ’s prolonged absence is an unfortunate USADA-administered suspension stemming from his admitted but inadvertent use of the banned substance 7-Keto-DHEA. Luckily, Machida’s 18-month sit has almost reached its expiration date, and as such, his return is reportedly in the works.
According to a report from Combate, a bout between Machida and fellow middleweight contender Derek Brunson is in the works for an October 28 Fight Night card in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The report also says that, if signed, the fight would serve as the main event.
— The MMA Kings (@mma_kings) August 17, 2017
Machida will enter this fight on a two-fight skid, having lost to Romero and former champ Luke Rockhold in his last two outings. These losses were preceded by a win over CB Dollaway, and a failed title fight with then champion Chris Weidman. Machida is 22-7 as a pro.
Brunson, meanwhile, last stepped into the cage in June, when he thumped Dan Kelly to a first-round knockout. This win was preceded by back-to-back losses to Anderson Silva and Robert Whittaker. He’s 17-5 overall.
The UFC’s October 28 return to Sao Paulo will also feature a light heavyweight scrap between former title challenger Glover Teixeira and promising Latvian-Canadian prospect Misha Cirkunov (who appeared on Wednesday’s edition of BJ Penn Radio).
How do you think Lyoto Machida will look in his anticipated return to the Octagon? Do you think he can take out Derek Brunson?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 8/17/2017.