Machida, 35, looked sharper than ever at 185 pounds, and he seems quite excited to be fighting at middleweight for the remainder of his career.
“Now I’ve found my weight. There are a lot of big guys at 205. Now I’m a big guy. I can fight everybody with my technique, strength and power," Machida said.
Machida admits he might have broken his foot during his UFC Fight Night 36 battle against Mousasi, so that might have stopped him from notching the finish.
“I don’t know what happened," Machida said after the fight. "I did some kicking and he defended with his knee. I don’t know if I broke my foot. I didn’t think about my foot during the fight, I just tried to keep my focus on the fight. He’s a tough opponent. But he kept his hand down. I saw I could kick his head, leg and body. I had confidence in my kicks.”
Analysis: Does Machida deserve a title shot against the winner of Chris Weidman and Vitor Belfort? Absolutely.
Machida didn't finish Mousasi, but it was a fairly one-sided beatdown that proved the Brazilian is the top contender at middleweight.
Machida is a crafty veteran who has a ton of experience, and he would be a tough opponent both for Weidman and Belfort.
Additionally, it's a fight that most UFC fans would want to see. Machida has more star power than most of the other guys in the mix for a title shot, as the casual fan doesn't know who Ronaldo Souza and Luke Rockhold are.
Here's a look at the full UFC Fight Night 36 results:
- Lyoto Machida def. Gegard Mousasi, Unanimous decision (49-46, 50-45, 50-45)
- Ronaldo Souza def. Francis Carmont, Unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
- Erick Silva def. Takenori Sato, Knockout (Round 1, 0:52)
- Nicholas Musoke def. Viscardi Andrade, Unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Charles Oliveira def. Andy Ogle, Submission (Round 3, 2:40)
- Joe Proctor def. Cristiano Marcello, Unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 29-28)
- Rodrigo Damm def. Ivan Jorge, Unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Francisco Trinaldo def. Jesse Ronson, Split decision (29-28, 28-29, 30-27)
- Iuri Alcantara def. Wilson Reis, Split decision (30-27, 28-29, 30-27)
- Felipe Arantes def. Maximo Blanco, Unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Ildemar Alcantara def. Albert Tumenov, Split decision (28-29, 29-28, 30-27)
- Zubaira Tuhugov def. Douglas Silva de Andrade, Unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 30-27)