Lyoto Machida vs. Tim Kennedy Middleweight Bout Set for UFC Fight for the Troops 3

August 22, 2013
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Lyoto Machida and Randy Couture at UFC 129

Several fights have been discussed for a possible move of Lyoto Machida from light heavyweight down to middleweight, but only one has become a reality.

“Lyoto Machida is moving down to middleweight. He’s gonna face Tim Kennedy at the next Fight for the Troops, which will be on Fox Sports 1,” announced UFC president Dana White on Wednesday night’s edition of Fox Sports Live.

UFC Fight for the Troops 3 will take place on Nov. 6 on Fox Sports 1. White has mentioned the event before, but on Thursday night added that it would take place at Fort Campbell, Ky.

The Fort Campbell base actually straddles the border of Tennessee and Kentucky.

Machida (19-4) has been considering a move to middleweight for quite some time. White had recently thrown out possible 185-pound match-ups for the former UFC light heavyweight champion that included Vitor Belfort and Nick Diaz, but they have now settled on Kennedy.

A U.S. Army Ranger, Kennedy (16-4) twice challenged for the Strikeforce middleweight championship, but was never able to secure the belt. He has won his last two bouts, including his UFC debut against Roger Gracie at UFC 162 in May of this year.

No other bouts have been announced for UFC Fight for the Troops 3, although Jorge Masvidal vs. Rustam Khabilov is rumored for the event.

It’s been more than two-and-a-half years since the UFC last held a Fight for the Troops event, since the promotion was unable to secure government approval for an event it had planned for U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

Company officials usually reserve preference for military personnel for UFC Fight for the Troops event tickets. The shows are also a vehicle for the UFC to help raise funds for military related charities, such as the Wounded Warriors Project.

The Wounded Warriors Project is a charity that raises awareness and enlists the public’s aid for the needs of injured service members, helps injured service members aid and assist each other, and provides unique, direct programs and services to meet the needs of injured service members.

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  • fsunoles10

    i was impressed with kennedy in that gracie fight, not sure if he’s gonna be able to hang with machida but after that last performance i wouldnt be surprised at all if he ends up pulling it out.

    • Lucas Freire

      There’s a whole universe in between Roger and Lyoto’s striking skills.

      • shakejunt

        there was also a whole universe between lyoto and phil in that department, but i see your point.

        • Ian Price

          Yeah I agree with lucas, machida’s significantly better of a striker, but at that top level of MMA, the differences aren’t that great, with the exception of unique cases, like Anderson. And possibly Lyoto! We will see.

          I still can’t believe Machida doesn’t knock out everybody like Anderson does. Maybe he doesn’t have the chin that Andy has, so he has to protect it more?

      • fsunoles10

        he out grappled a pretty bad ass grappler so like i said i wouldnt be surprised if he pulls this one out with another surprising display of skills. machida wont break him so he’s gonna be forced to ko him but kennedy has showed a solid chin and a well rounded striking game so i dont see that happening either.

        • Lucas Freire

          Roger is the greatest grappler to ever compete in Jiu Jitsu.
          The problem is MMA isn’t sport BJJ.
          Kennedy did the basics, and what’s more important: He MIXED martial arts.
          Lots and lots of guys already served as proof that it doesn’t matter if you’re a genius in a specific area, you’ll find someone who will nullify your game, and then you’re done.
          In my opinion Roger isn’t a full fledged MMA fighter yet, while Kennedy is a true warrior and fighter. Talking about the JJ guys, I personally admire how Werdum and Jacare are evolving on the stand up

  • dgs

    Machida moving to 185 is just as stupid as when Rich Franklin made the move to 185. Both of those guys are natural 205 pounders. Franklin always looked emaciated, at his 185 lb weigh-ins; I suspect Machida will look the same.

    Instead of these fighters moving out of their natural weight class and in the process dropping unhealthy amounts of weight, why don’t they just figure out what they’re doing wrong in their own weight class. If Machida doesn’t up his aggression level he is not going to do any better at 185 than he did at 205. It’s not his weight that is holding him back, its his fighting style, which more and more fighters have now figured out. He is too predictable.

    The real answer to all of this weight cutting nonsense is to have weigh-ins on the day of the fight. That one move would keep all fighters in their natural weight class instead of all these guys trying to gain unnatural weight/size advantages come fight night.

    • stop right there

      Dude, Machida weighed in at 202lbs for his LHW fights on a couple occasions. He’s a small LHW! Many MWs cut to 185 from a larger weight.

    • David

      I stopped reading your comment because before Silva Rich Franklin was a dominant champion at 185.

      • Sarcasticball

        you read my mind body.


        Exactly. Dgs must be a part time fan because that is just a noobie statement to make. Rich was a beast at 185. Losing to silva and cung only pretty much.
        He lost all his other fights at light heavy. He hasn’t lost much period

    • Darin

      Yeah, Franklin dropping to 185 and becoming champ……big mistake.

    • fsunoles10

      also the point about machida is a bit off, i cant remember what fight it was but he weighed in at well under the 205 weight limit for one of his past 4 fights. he can make 185 and still have plenty of energy.

  • George Sperry

    I don’t think Kennedy will be able to get his hands on Machida.

  • Thompson

    @dgs did you say Machida is too predictable? LMAO! See if his of highlight reel KO victims agree.

    • Lucas Freire

      Bader had to see the replay 50 times to notice that right hand coming.

    • Dragon Kid

      I didn’t see Machida KO anybody in the Davis, Hendo, Rampage, and Shogun fights.

      • Thompson

        I said KO victims, not random previous opponents.

        If you believe any single MMA fighter will never put on a lackluster performance, you’re heart will be broken in no time. Perhaps try Mike Tyson’s Punchout.

        • Dragon Kid

          Machida’s performance against those guys I listed were very lackluster and predictable.

  • Lucas Freire

    Being the bigger man for the first time on his UFC carrer, I think Weidman would be the only one who may even get close to having a grip on Machida.
    He’s already elusive as a LHW, and he doesn’t drop any weight. As a MW he’ll be faster AND stronger than most fighters.

    • shakejunt

      and he’ll still fight like the other guy has cooties

    • Deus e Fiel

      Totally agree! This is Lyoto’s natural weight class, he should be very dominant. No offense to Kennedy, but this is one Lyoto’s easiest opponents in years.

  • Nice matchup. Kennedy deserves a high profile fight like this. Kennedy will come at Machida, no doubt about it. Lyoto needs to be aggressive. He’s only been ko’d once, he’s not in a big danger if pushes forward a little more. He can’t afford to lose another fight by decision based on how he fought. I like this fight way more then Diaz and Machida.

  • BobGyro

    Want a sure bet? Bet Machida 100% guananteed. Kennedy nice man respected and a true american good guy. Not in Machida class period. Easy money win. Lock it in.

  • BobGyro

    Machida KO’d Courture. Kennedy nice guy but out of his league in this fight. Kennedy will be a bloody mess and will lose.

    • shakejunt

      what was the last bloody machida fight?

      not his blood, someone else’s blood.

      • BobGyro

        Kennedy bleeds on the handshake

        • shakejunt

          what does that even mean?

  • Mr Pete

    ok tim, this is the biggest fight of your career, realistically you are outmatched in every aspect of this fight and have a very high probability of getting kicked in face ko but you do have a 1% chance, so here it goes.
    1. Move forwards at all times
    2. swing knee and kick at anything, the wilder the better
    3 breath really hard and exaggerate your strikes with a big HIGHYACHOOWAMPOW!
    4 relentlessly go for takedowns, clinch and hold
    5 put this all together and create the illusion of aggression and control
    Signed: Phil Davis, endorsed by Leonard Garcia, Sponsored by Jake Shields

    • Lucas Freire

      Well, I can’t say I disagree. lol

    • shakejunt

      ha, funny, kinda agree, but:

      takedown > 2 minutes of staring and flinching

      • Mr Pete

        clean punches, knees, kicks to head and body, 1 near ko flurry, center control and aggression 8-10 td defense vs 2 take downs out of desperation that lasted 1 minute and resulted in zero damage. hmm….??????

        • Ian Price

          I respect your opinion, and I’m still on the fence about that fight. It was close, to me.

        • Advance*

          Near KO flurry? WTF were you watching?

          • Mr Pete

            The one where Davis got kicked in the liver, followed by a 1-2 punch to the face, retreated, went for a desperate take down (typical) but took a shin to the face instead, covered up and ran. Rd 1 1:18

    • Ksmma

      Maybe lyoto will get knee surgery befor this fight so he can actually take a step forward. It must be hard to walk backwards everywhere he goes. By the way Phil Davis landed more strikes in their fight.
      If Davis was so “wild” with his kicks and knees why didnt machida move forward to capitalize on any of them?
      I thought machida won, but I can’t comprehend anyone sticking up for the total lackluster fight of machida of late.

      • Mr Pete

        Your another one of those huh? if you actually watched the fight instead of being a parrot, you would of seen Machida controlling the center moving forward as the aggressor. Please lord show me anywhere in the fight Davis landing clean strikes. The only unblocked strike I saw was a very lightly grazing overhand right. Prove me wrong, please I will recant show me. I can’t comprehend why people think getting hit is good thing?

    • solo

      HILARIOUS! I love the sarcasm!


    Again the ufc dropped the ball!!! We could of had the dragon vs vitor or chael or even rockhold or philippou??
    A lot of bad match making lately…

    • shakejunt

      they’re thinking down the road. mw needs contenders regardless of the outcome of silva’s rematch.


        Exactly, The Dragon vs The Phenom would of made for a great title eliminator. Then you have Chael fight the winner of Souza / Okami, the victor of that would now be in line for a title shot as well. And if Munoz beats Bisping, he should be in the conversation too.. This would give you a more clear cut contender. Also if Rockhold can get pass Boetsch & Philippou pass Carmont hook those two up, Kennedy can fight Thaels Leites.

  • bajafox

    The best part of this fight is that it’s free

  • ZZtoppppp

    I like Tim Kennedy but this is a nightmare matchup for him.

    He stands absolutely no chance in the stand up game with Machida, none whatsoever, I don’t care what anyone says.

    Kennedy would have a chance if he was on the ground, but the only person to successfully take Machida down has been Phil Davis (arguably the best wrestler alongside GSP in all of MMA) and even he was only able to do it a couple of times.

  • BobGyro

    Tim Kennedy’;s big mouth got him this Machida fight. Tim was complaining about UFC salaries being low. Dana set Tim up to get destroyed. Kennedy deserves this beatdown.

  • BobGyro

    Tim Kennedy is not in Machida league or qualified to fight the Brazilian warrior. Look for a bloody beatdown and submission of Kennedy. Dana made this fight after Kennedy ripped Dana on salaries. Call this a Dana White revenge bout for speaking badly on pay.