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UFC ‘Belem’ start time, TV schedule, who is fighting tonight at ‘Machida vs Anders’

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MMA: UFC Fight Night-Brunson vs Machida Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) returns to the hurt business tonight (Sat., Feb, 3, 2018) for UFC Fight Night 125, which takes place inside Arena Guilherme Paraense in Belem, Brazil. In the main event of the evening, Lyoto Machida takes on rising contender Eryk Anders. The co-main event, meanwhile, features a women’s Flyweight scrap between Valentina Shevchenko and Priscila Cachoeira.

What’s Hot:

Machida is in the midst of a horrible three-fight losing streak, getting finished in all three outings (two via knockout and once by submission). Anders, meanwhile, is scorching hot thus far in his young mixed martial arts (MMA) career, going 10-0 including winning his first two bouts inside the Octagon.

The booking of this match up is an odd one to say the least given their current paths. But, it also makes sense, as it will tell us a lot about both combatants. In victory, Machida can hang on to his career inside the eight-walled cage a bit longer and prove he can hang with the young up-and-comers. For Anders, a win over “The Dragon” will be the biggest of his career. And even though Lyoto isn’t the fighter he once was, a victory over the former UFC Light Heavyweight champion will look good on his resume.

Original Card Vs Actual Card:

The card remained relatively the same with the exception of Marcelo Golm stepping in for Luis Henrique to face off against Timothy Johnson. And Pedro Munhoz came in a ridiculous five pounds heavy for his fight against John Dodson, which ultimately resulted in the fight being canceled.

Injuries:

No other injuries were reported.

New Blood:

Priscila Cachoeira will put her undefeated (8-0) record on the line when she makes her Octagon debut against Valentina Schevchenko in what is truly a tough draw for her first UFC fight. Maia Stevenson will also be looking to make a splash in her first-ever UFC fight when she takes on fellow newcomer Polyana Viana. Both talented ladies are riding high with five-fight win streaks. Someone is about to taste an “L” for the first time in a long time.

How The Prelims Look:

The “Prelims” portion of the event will be headlined by a Welterweight scrap that will see Sergio Moraes take on Tim Means. Both men are desperate for a win, and despite hardly getting any love on big cards, both men like to scrap, which means fights fans could be in for a good one here. Also, Iuri Alcantara and Joe Soto collide in what is sure-to-be an entertaining Bantamweight scrap, as both men also look to get back into the win column after disastrous outings in their previous bouts.

Who Needs A Win Badly:

There’s no secret here: Machida needs a win in the worst way after dropping three in a row rather convincingly. It’s been a tough fall from the top for the former 205-pound champion, who at one time was considered to be a champion able to hold a long and dominate reign. However, “The Machida Era” lasted just one fight. Going back to 2014, Machida has lost four of five overall and his legacy was tarnished a bit when he was popped by USADA. But, a win for “The Dragon” can somewhat turn things around, or at the very least, leave him on the UFC roster for a bit longer.

Interest Level 5/10

It’s just not an “exciting” card, people. In the co-main event, we had Dodson taking on Munhoz. Munhoz has won three “Performance of the Night” awards in his last four outings, so a showdown between him and “The Magician” would’ve brought some fireworks to a card that may need it. We also have Schevchenko making her return to take on an undefeated prospect, a fight that was bumped up to co-main event. The rest of the main card includes Desmond Green, Marcelo Golm, Anthony Smith and Michel Prezares. I get it, the talent has to be spread around, but your telling me the promotion couldn’t find ONE big name -- preferably Brazilian — not on a losing streak to bring back to Belem?

Where is “Shogun?”

At the end of the day, we’ve seen fight cards that aren’t exactly stacked with top names deliver the goods. Whether or not this event is up to that task remains to be seen.

Full UFC Fight Night 125 Fight Card:

UFC Fight Night 125 FOX Sports 1 Main Card

185 lbs.: Lyoto Machida vs Eryk Anders
135 lbs.: John Dodson vs. Pedro Munoz CANCELLED (DETAILS HERE)
125 lbs.: Priscila Cachoeira vs. Valentina Shevchenko
155 lbs.: Desmond Green vs. Michel Prazeres
265 lbs.: Marcelo Golm vs. Timothy Johnson
185 lbs.: Thiago Santos vs. Anthony Smith
135 lbs.: Douglas de Andrade vs. Marlon Vera

UFC Fight Night 125 FOX Sports 1 Prelims

170 lbs.: Tim Means vs. Sergio Moraes
155 lbs.: Damir Hadzovic vs. Alan Patrick
115 lbs.: Polyana Viana vs. Maia Stevenson
135 lbs.: Iuri Alcantara vs. Joe Soto

UFC Fight Night 125 Fight Pass Prelims

125 lbs.: Deiveson Figueiredo vs. Joseph Morales

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