The allure of holding the title of UFC champion is the driving force that motivates fighters to make the attempt. Former UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida once held that accolade and is determined to become a two-division UFC champion.
Machida (22-5) defeated Rashad Evans by knockout at UFC 96 to become the 205-pound champion. He defended the belt one time before losing the title to Mauricio “Shogun” Rua at UFC 113. He accepted a title shot on short notice and was submitted by current-champion Jon Jones in the UFC 140 main event.
Following a controversial decision loss to Phil Davis at UFC 163, the Brazilian made the career choice to drop down to the 185-pound weight class. After two decisive wins, Machida earned a title shot against middleweight champion Chris Weidman on July 5. Weidman won the five-round fight that earned Fight of the Night honors and instantly became a 2014 Fight of the Year candidate.
Machida bounced back from the loss by dispatching of C.B. Dollaway in 62-seconds at UFC Fight Night 58 in Brazil on Dec. 20. With the win, Machida feels he’s one or two fights away from another shot at UFC gold.
“Maybe one more fight, or two more fights. Hopefully I’ll fight for the belt again,” Machida told Fox Sports Live when asked how far away he thinks he is from another title fight. “I’m not thinking about that now. I’m just thinking about my next fight. Little by little.”
Ranked at No. 4 in the UFC’s middleweight division, Machida wants to face a top five-ranked fighter in his next outing.
Regardless whom he’s lined up against in his next fight, the 36-year-old wants to stay as active as possible.
“I want to fight more. I want to be fighting more times a year,” said Machida during the event’s post-fight press conference. “I’d like to have three or four fights a year. Every year.”