Lyoto Machida has a date and an opponent for his Bellator debut, which doubles as the promotion’s debut trip to Hawaii.
After dedicating the majority of his career to the Octagon, the former UFC light heavyweight champion will now fight under Scott Coker’s banner for the first time at Bellator 210 against former middleweight titleholder Rafael Carvalho, according to ESPN’s Ariel Helwani,
Lyoto Machida vs. former Bellator middleweight champion Rafael Carvalho is set for Bellator’s Hawaii debut on Dec. 15, Scott Coker told ESPN. Story coming shortly.— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) September 12, 2018
After 24 fights in the UFC, Lyoto Machida (24-8) left the promotion with a 16-8 record. During his time, he defeated notable names both in the light heavyweight and middleweight division, such as Mauricio Rua, Randy Couture, Rashad Evans, Dan Henderson, and Gegard Mousasi. In his last fight, the 40-year-old knocked out Vitor Belfort with a front kick. The Brazilian’s last loss came in October 2017, when he was knocked out by Derek Brunson.
Rafael Carvalho (15-2) won the vacant Bellator middleweight belt in October 2015, with a body TKO win over Brandon Halsey. He managed to defend his title three more times, defeating Melvin Manhoef twice and Alessio Sakara afterwards. The 32-year-old lost the belt in his last outing, back in May, when he faced Gegard Mousasi and was knocked out in the first round.
Bellator 210 takes place on December 15th in Honolulu, Hawaii. The card will be headlined by women’s flyweight title fight between Hawaii’s own Ilima-Lei Macfarlane and former UFC strawweight title challenger Valerie Letorneau.