Chael Sonnen: Chris Weidman vs. Lyoto Machida Is a Superfight

John HeinisSenior Analyst IMarch 3, 2014

USA today

Three-time UFC title challenger Chael Sonnen is pumped up for the UFC 173 main event between Chris Weidman and Lyoto Machida, so much so that he's calling the matchup a "superfight."

During last week's edition of UFC Tonight, per Fighters Only, "The American Gangster" expressed his excitement for the upcoming middleweight title tilt. 

“This is an incredible fight. Chris Weidman is the undefeated, undisputed middleweight champion of the world, taking out the all-time pound-for-pound king Anderson Silva,” Sonnen said on the show. “Lyoto Machida has never looked better since he’s come down to 185 pounds. He’s undefeated with a knockout over Mark Munoz, a unanimous decision over Gegard Mousasi, and he’s a former light heavyweight world champion ... When you talk about superfights, you talk about a champion from one weight class taking on another champion from another weight class. You want a superfight? On May 24, you’re getting one.”

Weidman was originally set to meet surging contender Vitor Belfort at the Las Vegas pay-per-view event, but "The Phenom" either withdrew or was removed from the card—depending on whose telling the story—shortly after the Nevada State Athletic Commission banned testosterone replacement therapy.  

As Sonnen noted, "The All-American" has yet to taste defeat inside the cage, currently boasting back-to-back victories over longtime divisional kingpin Anderson Silva. 

After a 2-2 stretch at 205 pounds between December 2011 and August 2013, "The Dragon" decided it was time to make the long rumored cut to middleweight.

At 185 pounds, the ex-UFC champ has posted a 2-0 mark over top-10 competition.

For the record, Sonnen is currently the No. 9 light heavyweight in the world according to the UFC's official rankings and is 1-2 since bumping back up from middleweight.

Sonnen is set to settle the score with longtime arch nemesis Wanderlei Silva on May 31 following season three of The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil where the two are head coaching opposite one another. 

Does Weidman vs. Machida really meet the definition of a superfight or is this just wishful thinking from Sonnen? 


John Heinis is a featured columnist for Bleacher Report. He is also the MMA editor for