The UFC announced that former UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto "The Dragon" Machida will replace Belfort and face Weidman in the main event of UFC 173 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday, May 24.
"Former UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida, who's undefeated since dropping to 185 pounds, will fight champion Chris Weidman in the main event of UFC 173 in May," UFC President Dana White said. "Machida was dominant in his last two fights, beating Gegard Mousasi and knocking out Mark Munoz.
"He's earned this shot at Weidman, who's coming off two straight wins over the greatest fighter of all time, Anderson Silva. Machida wants nothing more than to avenge the losses of his friend and training partner, and become just the third fighter in UFC history to win titles in two separate weight classes."
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