A successful night for ‘The Dragon’ in his first middleweight bout.
While he might be 35 years old, Lyoto Machida looks set to find a new lease of life in his UFC career after winning his debut at 185 pounds when he took on Mark Munoz in the main event in Manchester.
The former UFC light heavyweight champion had always fought small in the 205lbs ranks and eventually he chose to drop down and try his luck.
Facing good friend and training partner Munoz, the former champ used his ranged striking abilities to keep the well-renowned wrestler away from possible take downs early.
Machida landed several strong body kicks which had his opponent guessing whether to drop his hands or keep them up.
In the end it did not matter as Machida let rip with a left head kick that went through the defenses of Munoz and hit him in the top of the head.
The blow left Munoz stunned, and in a sign of the respect and friendship between the two fighters, Machida opted not to go for the follow up punches on the ground, with the referee stepping in to stop the fight.
Victory for Machida is set to put him inside the top five of the middleweight division, and another victory or two within the next year could see him in line for a title shot.