Vitor Belfort Drops Out Of UFC 173 Title Fight, Lyoto Machida Will Now Face Chris Weidman


Vitor Belfort’s mega revival of his legendary career may finally have come to an end, as we learn that he has withdrawn from his UFC 173 middleweight title fight with Chris Weidman. The news comes only one day after the NSAC and UFC put a unanimous ban on TRT.

Belfort’s replacement will be none other than Lyoto ‘The Dragon’ Machida, and ‘The Phenom’ had the following to say over at Fox Sports Live:

“The Nevada State Athletic Commission recently altered its policy and no longer will permit testosterone use exemptions and will not permit a TRT program. As other jurisdictions may follow suit, I am going to drop my TRT program and compete in MMA without it. Given the time constraints involved between now and my proposed next bout in may, I have determined not to apply for a license to fight in Nevada at this time.”

This is big news in terms of the title picture, and many fans have already debated the affects of the unanimous TRT ban in Nevada that was handed down just yesterday. We are only 24 hours removed from the ban and already the middleweight title picture is drastically altered.

The decision to ban TRT in Nevada came only one day after a shockingly revealing report on the treatment by ESPN’s ‘Outside The Lines’, couple that with Belfort’s quitting the title fight and TRT has literally become the biggest talking point in MMA once again.

Lyoto Machida and Chris Weidman also reacted, in answer to the newly announced title fight in the wake of this bombshell:

‘I’m really excited for this opportunity to fight UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman. I’m going to train hard and be well prepared for this fight.’

Weidman responded:

‘Machida is a dangerous fighter and he knows what it takes to be a champion. He’s been on my radar since he dropped to 185 so I’m looking forward to defending my title against at UFC 173 in May’

So what does this mean for the rest of the athletes that publicly, or non-publicly, use the controversial treatment, will we see a change in the sport like non other before. The results of this huge two days of news could shift the landscape of MMA forever.

‘The Dragon’ now steps in to face Chris Weidman at UFC 173, and things have just got a lot more interesting. Belfort will continue to compete without a TUE in Nevada, and Weidman has a whole new fighter to train for. Machida’s tricky counter-fighting style adds a lot more to the champion’s plate than Belfort did, in my opinion.

An obvious question to ask would be how many other high profile fights will be affected by the TRT ban? Will guys like Frank Mir retire? One thing is for sure, this new ruling by the NSAC/UFC has opened a very big can of worms. Stay tuned to for more updates as they arise. Check out the news piece below courtesy of Fox Sports.

Thumbnail: Jason Silva for USA TODAY Sports

  • LMAO trtfor belfort?? Thats so funny, guess jesus had other plans

    • Vitoid Belfortrt*

      • Get the name right VITOR BELFORT! Laugh all you want now all of you Vitor haters but, Let's just state the facts everyone knows that Vitor draws out big numbers out there in Brazil, So he'll just fight over there. State of Nevada's loss that the fans won't be able to see him fight over there, and when he does win the belt he's keeping it in Brazil!

        • UFC says they're following Nevada State Athletic Commissions lead to ban it. They over see the fights in Brazil I'm pretty sure. So Vitor won't be using it over there either.

          • correction the UFC doesn't control it over there but their commission banned it too! Great days for MMA.
            AKA SilvaOfTheStreets. new name guys.

        • I was joking. I'm a huge Belfort fan but Weidman would kill him.

    • DG1

      Don't diss Belfort for dropping out. I respect him for it. He's being carefull. At his age he has one legitimate title run left in him. He does not know how quitting TRT, three months before a title fight, will affect him. Better to postpone his title fight than lose it. Honestly, I believe he will still compete at a high level. Time will tell.

    • This news completely surprised me, Dana will never give Vitor another title shot.

  • This isn't so bad because this fight is just as if not more exciting than with Belfort. Machida era 2.0 here we go!

  • Travis Browne rejects TRT treatment even though he scores low levels, says TRT is for the weak minded

  • Machida will be very difficult for Weidman.

    • Machida was 1 of the people I said would give Weidman the most trouble, he's going to be very hard to take down. His striking isn't anything like Weidman's faced before. He certainly won't be taunting in the cage and his distance timing and speed is going to be rough for Weidman. This fight is a toss up for me right now.

  • I will certainly respect Vitor if he fights without TRT.

  • I was kind of expecting this… getting off TRT cold turkey is not healthy and could cause a lot of issues. We probably won't see Belfort back til Fall. This is very unfortunate, BUT Weidman VS Machida fucking works for me too !!!!!

    • I was wondering why he couldn't just stop now and be ready by may but I guess just getting off it cold turkey being bad makes sense, its a damn shame I was really looking forward to this fight.

      • Yeah me too… it takes 3 to 12 months to get off it in a healthy way from what i've heard depending on how long u been on it and how much. So he probably couldn't get off it in time for camp and random testing. Its most def. a shame. Machida makes up for it though, but i still want to see this fight happen later…

  • Sick match up! Going to be a great fight. I'm going for Weidman but Machida is a beast!

  • would of loved to see vitor fight weidman first but you cant just stop TRT overnight and be 100% he needs to adjust. in the meantime Machida vs weidman is gonna be just as sick of a fight.

  • vitor, dan hendo, chael sonnen, bigfoot silva, frank mir and many others are all in the firing line…

    Here is the issue I have with Vitor….It was well publicised that an exemption was unlikely well before yesterdays announcement so why hasn't his training been adjusted to this reality. How bad does Vitor want the title considering only last week we saw a guy fight Cormier on ten days notice…May is a long way out for vitor to prepare…Its not like he hasn't been training each day….

    Is Vitor irresponsible for assuming he would get an exemption and not having a back up plan to still be able to fight?

    • It was not banned yet… and even if he knew it since he got the shot after Silva's loss, it still wouldn't have been enough time for him to get off it in time for camp 3 months out and random testing. So it was a gamble all along. His camp must've known Vitor would not be able to take the fight without TRT on such a short notice (not really short but considering him having to get off TRT, its not enough time) He probably needs about 6 months.

      • he might be a featherweight after getting off the trt XP…

  • Welp, I guess going forward, any TRT fighter should wear a T-Shirt with an asterisk symbol during their fights

  • Watch vitors body change before your eyes ! Just like overeems