Chris Weidman hopes to hush his skeptics by slaying “The Dragon.”
Weidman checked in at 185 pounds, as he prepares to defend the Ultimate Fighting Championship middleweight crown against Lyoto Machida (184.5) in the UFC 175 headliner on Saturday at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. Women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey (135) and challenger Alexis Davis (135) at Friday’s official weigh-in also met their contracted weight requirements for the co-main event.
Spawned by the Serra-Longo Fight Team, the undefeated Weidman enters the cage on the strength of back-to-back victories over the great Anderson Silva. He last appeared at UFC 168 in December, when he checked a low kick from the Brazilian, breaking his leg and bringing an immediate halt to their rematch. It came a little less than six months after Weidman knocked out a clowning Silva to capture the UFC middleweight championship. The 30-year-old Mineola, N.Y., native has compiled a perfect 7-0 mark since touching down in the Octagon as a highly touted but unproven prospect in March 2011.
Machida, who once ruled the light heavyweight division, has recorded two straight wins since downshifting to 185 pounds. The 36-year-old karateka last fought at a UFC Fight Night event in February, when he took a unanimous verdict from onetime Strikeforce and Dream champion Gegard Mousasi at Arena Jaragua in Jaragua do Sul, Brazil. Machida has beaten former two-division Pride Fighting Championships titleholder Dan Henderson and “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 8 winner Ryan Bader while also holding victories against six former UFC champions: Randy Couture, Mauricio Rua, Rashad Evans, Tito Ortiz, B.J. Penn and Rich Franklin. He owns a stellar 13-4 record in UFC competition.
UFC 175 “Weidman vs. Machida” -- which airs live on pay-per-view at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT -- also features a heavyweight scrap pairing Stefan Struve (251.5) with Matt Mitrione (254), a middleweight tilt pitting Uriah Hall (185) against Thiago Santos (185) and a bantamweight clash matching Marcus Brimage (135.5) with Russell Doane (136).
Two hours prior, Fox Sports 1 will carry four preliminary bouts: Urijah Faber (136) vs. Alex Caceres (135), Kenny Robertson (171) vs. Ildemar Alcantara (170), Chris Camozzi (185) vs. Bruno Santos (185) and George Roop (135) vs. Rob Font (135). The two remain undercard matchups will stream to UFC Fight Pass at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT, as Guilherme Vasconcelos (185) meets Luke Zachrich (185) and Kevin Casey (185) faces Bubba Bush (185).
UFC 175 ‘WEIDMAN VS. MACHIDA’ WEIGH-IN RESULTS:
Chris Weidman (185) vs. Lyoto Machida (184.5)
Ronda Rousey (135) vs. Alexis Davis (135)
Stefan Struve (251.5) vs. Matt Mitrione (254)
Uriah Hall (185) vs. Thiago Santos (185)
Marcus Brimage (135.5) vs. Russell Doane (136)
Urijah Faber (136) vs. Alex Caceres (135)
Kenny Robertson (171) vs. Ildemar Alcantara (170)
Chris Camozzi (185) vs. Bruno Santos (185)
George Roop (135) vs. Rob Font (135)
Guilherme Vasconcelos (185) vs. Luke Zachrich (185)
Kevin Casey (185) vs. Bubba Bush (185)