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UFC 224 results: Lyoto Machida front kick flattens retiring Vitor Belfort in second

MMAJunkie logo MMAJunkie 5/13/2018 John Morgan
a man in a white shirt: USA TODAY © USA TODAY USA TODAY

In a battle of Brazilian legends, it was Lyoto Machida who proved victorious over Vitor Belfort.

The middleweight bout opened up the main card of today's UFC 224 event at Jeunesse Arena in Rio de Janeiro. It aired on pay-per-view following prelims on FX and UFC Fight Pass.

Machida set up in the center to start, bouncing lightly as he looked to counter, but Belfort was patient in the early going. Both men were wary of the other, leading to some caution that frustrated the fans in the first few minutes. Machida eventually reached forward with a sneaky kick that saw the heel touch the chin, but Belfort retreated before his opponent could follow.

Machida was clearly the more active fighter, and he appeared the quicker man, as well. Belfort opened up briefly in the latter stages of the frame, but it was Machida's kicks from range that proved the best offense in the first.

Machida continued to use kicks to keep his opponent at distance, before a front kick landed clean to the face, sending Belfort crashing to the canvas. Machida didn't bother to follow the devastating blow, which ended the fight in spectacular fashion reminiscent of Anderson Silva's famed 2011 knockout of "The Phenom."

"I trained a lot for this fight, but I did not train the front kick that much," Machida said after the fight. "But when you are well-trained and well-prepared, you can see the fight more clearly and be able to do things that you did not even train. 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.

"Let's wait for the next opponent the UFC is going to give me. I would like to fight Michael Bisping. It's another fight that could have happened and did not. I want to fight a few more times this year."

After a frustrating three-fight losing streak, Machida (24-8 MMA, 16-8 UFC) now owns back-to-back victories. Belfort (26-14 MMA, 15-11 UFC), at 41, kept to plan and announced his intention to end his fighting days following the contest.

Up-to-the-minute UFC 224 results include:

Lyoto Machida def. Vitor Belfort via knockout (kick) - Round 2, 1:00

Cezar Ferreira def. Karl Roberson via technical submission (arm-triangle choke) - Round 1, 4:45

Aleksei Oleinik def. Junior Albini via submission (Ezekiel choke) - Round 1, 1:45

Davi Ramos def. Nick Hein via submission (rear-naked choke) - Round 1, 4:15

Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos def. Sean Strickland via TKO (kick, punches) - Round 1, 3:12

Warlley Alves def. Sultan Aliev via TKO (doctor stoppage) - Round 2, 5:00

Jack Hermansson def. Thales Leites via TKO (punches) - Round 3, 2:10

Ramazan Emeev def. Alberto Mina via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Markus Perez def. James Bochnovic via submission (rear-naked choke) - Round 1, 4:28

For complete coverage of UFC 224, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

(MMAjunkie's Fernanda Prates and Ken Hathaway contributed to this report on site in Rio.)

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