Lyoto Machida made himself an instant contender in a new division when he finally made the drop to 185 pounds and knocked out his friend Mark Munoz in the first round of their UFC Fight Night 30 bout last month. Machida talked to Sherdog about how he felt at 185, what it was like to fight a friend, and what he thinks of the possibility of having to fight another friend - Anderson Silva.
First he talks about the weight cut and the advantages of being at 185:
"I felt good. I thought it was going to be more difficult, but it involved quiet, diet and dehydration. It all worked. I’ve been training well around the weight. I’m not that heavy, either, so I don’t feel it much."
"I think in the other division the guys were bigger than me physically. At middleweight, I started to find an ideal weight for me. I face guys my size, my height and with my physique. Another advantage is that I’m not hitting light heavyweights. I’m now beating on middleweights, and I’m guessing a lighter opponent would feel the blows more."
On fighting Munoz:
"Separating your profession from friendship is very difficult," he said. "In Mark’s case, he thinks like me. We fought and went out to dinner afterwards, without any issues. We have the same goals, but only one of us can occupy that space at a time. We fought because we had an agreement: to fight and then congratulate whoever won. If one of us had not agreed to that, the fought would not have happened.
Would he fight Anderson Silva if it came to it? He's pretty non-committal about it, even though he says he doesn't want to do it:
"I don’t want this fight," Machida said. "We’re close, and we have the same manager. He’s fighting for the belt, and I’m still far from it. It’s hard to talk about it now. I don’t know if we will cross paths one day. Let’s let things happen and decide what to do. You have to be prepared to face to situation. You have to talk about it."
Before it comes to that though, Machida (20-4) meets Gegard Mousasi in the main event of a Fight Night show in Brazil on February 8th.