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Anderson Silva May Give Up the Belt if Lyoto Machida is Next in Line

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Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

When Lyoto Machida made the jump to middleweight in October, successfully knocking out Mark Munoz, many wondered if a bout between him and his longtime friend Anderson Silva could be in the cards.

Silva will be fighting Chris Weidman for the title in December, and should he be victorious, that might put Machida in an awkward spot. Machida is obviously willing to fight his friends, he and Munoz are former training partners, but it’s obviously a situation he’d like to avoid when possible.

Luckily for him, if Machida is in line for a title shot, and Silva has the belt, “The Spider” might just give it up.

“We don’t know if Anderson is going to keep fighting,” Machida told USA Today Sports. “He’s been a champion for so long, for so many years. He said it himself: ‘If I have to fight with Lyoto, I’d rather give up the belt because I’ve been a champion for so long.'”

That’s an interesting idea, and is pretty much unprecedented in the sport of MMA. If such a situation does come to pass, you can bet there’s going to be some major controversy surrounding it.

Machida isn’t focusing on that though, and is training hard to establish himself in the middleweight division.

“I want to go down in history and make a name for myself in the UFC,” Machida said. “I want to do what these guys did because it would be a very rare thing that very few guys have done.”

“Switching divisions, making this whole new change, was like a new chapter in my career. This is a new moment for me.”