Lyoto Machida hoped for a title shot with a win over Gergard Mousasi. He got the win. His title shot may have to wait.
The Brazilian karate black belt put on a prototypical Lyoto Machida performance in Brazil on Saturday night, employing sharp kicks and slick defense for a five-round decision victory. The Dutch kickboxer, who has defeated Mark Hunt, Hector Lombard, and Babalu, slips to 34-4-2 with the decision loss. The head kicks that won Machida the decision may have, temporarily at last, knocked Machida out of title contention. He reported a third-round foot injury after the fight, and could be spotted limping and in an air cast. Machida is 2-0 since dropping to middleweight, and, with wins over Dan Henderson, Randy Couture, Tito Ortiz, and Rashad Evans, appears as the natural choice for a big-money middleweight challenge for Chris Weidman.
The Dragon’s loss was Jacare’s gain. Instead of facing the former light-heavyweight champion, the winner of the upcoming Chris Weidman-Vitor Belfort middleweight championship match in Las Vegas may go head-to-head with a fighter lower on Saturday night’s card. Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza earned a decision over Francis Carmont. The Brazilian has won six straight, which he believes makes him the sensible challenger for Chris Weidman’s middleweight strap. Souza holds notable victories over Robbie Lawler, Yushin Okami, and Jason “Mayhem” Miller.