Lyoto Machida Turns Down Title Shot, Jon Jones To Face Vitor Belfort At UFC 152

Image via Esther Lin of MMA Fighting

This has been one of the craziest days in the history of the UFC, and you would have thought it would have ended with a whimper. Think again. Lyoto Machida has turned down a title shot at UFC 152 against UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones. So who will fight Jones, you ask? Chael Sonnen? Chris Weidman? Nope. How about Vitor Belfort (via MMA Fighting):

Jon Jones will not be facing Lyoto Machida at UFC 152 after all.

Instead, Vitor Belfort will fight Jones for the UFC light heavyweight title on Sept. 22 in Toronto. UFC president Dana White confirmed the change late Thursday night.

According to White, Machida turned down the title shot on Thursday. Belfort volunteered to fight Jones on one month's notice and was granted the title shot by the promotion.

Honestly, I'm as shocked as you are. Belfort (21-9) is coming off a first-round submission win over Anthony Johnson at UFC 142. He's a former UFC light heavyweight champion, but hasn't competed at 205 since 2007. He was scheduled to face off with Alan Belcher at UFC 153, but that's out the window now. Perhaps Weidman can step into that fight, who knows.

Jones was scheduled to meet Dan Henderson at UFC 151 on September 1st, but Henderson withdrew with an injury. Jones turned down a bout with Chael Sonnen, so the whole card was scrapped and Jones was expected to face Machida in Toronto. Now it will be The Phenom across the cage from him. What a day in the UFC. What a day.

UPDATE - The UFC has now confirmed the matchup.

SBN coverage of UFC 152: Jones vs. Somebody

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Bloody Elbow

You must be a member of Bloody Elbow to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bloody Elbow. You should read them.

Join Bloody Elbow

You must be a member of Bloody Elbow to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bloody Elbow. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_5349_tracker