At UFC 224 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on Saturday, Vitor Belfort expected to head off into retirement.
Mackenzie Dern won against Amanda Cooper but the real drama had come at the weigh in, where Dern missed the 116lbs straweight limit for a non-title fight by a massive half a stone! Belfort ended his career with a 26-15 MMA record. "It's time for me to think, and take care of my family and endeavours".
Apparently, Brazilian legend Vitor Belfort will retire without ever having learned the defense against the front kick. The second he saw a slight opening in Belfort's guard, he landed the crane kick beautifully which spelt the end for Belfort and his career in the UFC. So, congratulations to Machida, and I'm leaving my gloves here. "I want to thank my team, Tristar". I'm OK. I think everything in life has a beginning, middle and end.
Now 41, Belfort had memorable trilogies against Couture and Dan Henderson and fought a who's who of MMA stars including Tank Abbott, Chuck Lidell, Tito Ortiz, Alistair Overeem, Anthony "Rumble" Johnson, Michael Bisping, Luke Rockhold, Jacare and Gegard Mousasi.
"He surprised me pretty well", Belfort said in his post-fight interview. Everyone needs to respect him. "I know it was a lot like the kick I got in Randy Couture when he retired, with the difference that his was right and that was left, so maybe it is the history repeating itself".
First and foremost, this weekend's lineup is solid from top to bottom, offering a nice collection of familiar names, fringe contenders and important scraps, capped by a championship fight.
If this proves to be Belfort's last fight, it marks the end of a long, brilliant career.
Lyoto Machida managed to recreate one of the most famous UFC knockouts of all-time on the very same person who fell victim to it the first time around. Have YOUR say in the comments section below.