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Lyoto Machida Had Two Other Opponents In Mind Before Tim Kennedy

Lyoto Machida had several names in mind for his next fight, but the UFC went with former Strikeforce star Tim Kennedy. ??The Dragon,? who drops to middleweight in the contest, had Vitor Belfort and Chael Sonnen in mind.

“Tim Kennedy is a tough guy, but I wanted to fight Belfort or Chael Sonnen next,” said Machida to MMA Fighting. “But sometimes you can’t choose. The UFC asked me to take this fight and I’m in.”

It??s the first time Machida will cut to such a low weight class, as he’s always been a heavyweight or light heavyweight. Machida held the UFC strap for a short time and is 4-4 since 2010.

Kennedy won his UFC debut over Roger Gracie. The former Strikeforce middleweight title challenger is 16-4.

They??re set for UFC Fight Night 31 on November 6. It comes from Fort Campbell in Kentucky.

Sonnen has no return opponent and Belfort takes on Dan Henderson.