Lyoto Machida’s time as a Bellator fighter will not be confined to a single weight class. Speaking at a Tuesday press conference announcing Bellator’s new deal with DAZN, Bellator President Scott Coker confirmed that Machida will most likely compete both in the 185-pound middleweight division and the 205-pound light heavyweight division, where he once wore UFC gold.
Scott Coker says Lyoto Machida will fight at both light heavyweight and middleweight. Glad to hear this.
— Tom Taylor (@TomTayMMA) June 26, 2018
This is particularly interesting news given that Machida holds a knockout victory over reigning Bellator light heavyweight champion Ryan Bader, and a decision victory over reigning Bellator middleweight champion Gegard Mousasi. Rematches with either man would seem like pretty viable options for the former UFC light heavyweight champion.
News that Machida will compete in multiple Bellator weight classes does not exactly come as a shock. The promotion has a long history of letting fighters drift between weight classes in search of the most exciting fights. The light heavyweight champ Bader is competing in Bellator’s Heavyweight Grand Prix. Welterweight champion Rory MacDonald is moving up in weight to battle Gegard Mousasi for middleweight gold. Former Bellator heavyweight and light heavyweight contender Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal is allegedly headed down to middleweight. The list goes on and on.
Machida joins the Bellator roster on a two-fight streak, having recently bested Eryk Anders by decision and fellow legend Vitor Belfort by knockout.
“I went to Bellator and they made me an offer I couldn’t refuse,” Machida said. “Everything was okay. UFC did match everything, but I was keeping my word to Scott Coker an Mike Kogan.”
“I am a man of my word,” he continued. “So when UFC did match everything, I couldn’t come back again. Scott Coker asked me how much I would like to receive for fight. So he said, ‘Lyoto, if I give that to you, will you jump aboard to Bellator?’ And I said yes. When I come back to UFC and tell everything that happened, UFC match everything, but you know I had gave my word to Scott Coker and Bellator and that is one of my principles so I can not go back on my word. So if I say something I have to do what I said.”
Who do you want to see Lyoto Machida fight in his Bellator debut?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 6/26/2018.This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM