Former UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida has an original game plan heading into UFC Belem.
Machida is slated to take on Eryk Anders in a middleweight bout in the main event of UFC Belem. He competed inside the Octagon for the first time in over two years in October but lost to Derek Brunson by first-round TKO in Brazil.
If you recall, Machida was suspended for 18 months due to an anti-doping violation.
Machida did declare his usage of a product containing the banned substance 7-keto-dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), which is a steroid.
Machida also confirmed the use of the product and said he did not know it contained a prohibited drug. Once his sample was tested, it came back with an elevated 7β-hydroxy-DHEA to DHEA ratio during a sample collection in April 2016.
Machida, who is coming into this bout on a three-fight losing streak, opened up on returning to his karate roots for this bout during a recent video that was posted on the UFC’s official YouTube channel to promote the event.
“Karate represents to me everything,” Machida said (transcript courtesy of MMA Mania). “This fight, I want to go back to my roots and focus on karate more than anything. Karate style can be very tricky for all my opponents. Eryk Anders is a very aggressive fighter, he likes to come all the time. That matches my style.”
UFC Belem (Fight Night 125) is set to take place on Saturday, February 3, 2018 at Arena Guilherme Paraense in Belem, Brazil. The event will mark the promotion’s first visit to Pará in the country’s North region.
The main card will air on FOX Sports 1 at 10 p.m. ET while the preliminary card will be split broadcasted on FOX Sports 1 at 8 p.m. ET and the promotion’s streaming service, UFC Fight Pass, at 7 p.m. ET.
What are your thoughts on his plan come fight night? Let us know in the comment section below.