Former UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida was successful in his first fight at middleweight last weekend when he took on Mark Munoz at UFC Fight Night 30, and it looks like the win meant much more than determining his status in the 185-pound division.
According to reports, the fight against Munoz was the last on his UFC contract, so he will now be seeking a new deal.
“His win was actually bigger than we thought. I spoke to his manager and this was actually the last fight on Machida’s UFC contract,” Ariel Helwani said on Tuesday’s episode of UFC Tonight on FOX Sports 1. “So his stock is a whole lot higher after his big win. He wants to fight Vitor Belfort next. But his manager believes Vitor doesn’t want to fight Lyoto.”
Machida will likely get a much bigger contract than he would have if he wouldn’t have delivered a first-round knockout over his good friend and training partner.
Once Machida gets his new contract, he will be looking to make another run at UFC gold before he calls it a career.
Machida has said that he would like to face fellow Brazilian Vitor Belfort in his next fight at middleweight, but Belfort has recently been attempting to hand-pick his opponents so he may have no interest in such a tough challenge.