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Former UFC light heavyweight champ Lyoto Machida will look to move himself once again into title contention in the middleweight division this weekend as he takes on fellow contender C.B. Dollaway at UFC Fight Night 58.

In this week's 'Friday Fight', we look back on Machida's August 2012 performance against Ryan Bader, which saw him rebound off a 205lb championship fight loss to Jon Jones.

Watch the full fight below.

With Mark Munoz's original opponent Caio Magalhaes pulling out of their scheduled UFC 184 bout due to an infection, it was announced yesterday that Roan Carneiro will be filling in to face Munoz on February 28th.

The event will be headlined by a middleweight championship fight between Vitor Belfort and reigning champ Chris Weidman.

Carneiro previously competed in the UFC from 2007-2008. He had a run of 2-3 and was cut after a split-decision loss to Ryo Chonan at UFC 88. After leaving the promotion Roan has gone 7-1, most recently defeating former UFC fighter Brock Larson in the Battlegrounds O.N.E. tournament final.

Munoz hasn't competed inside the Octagon since his May submission loss to Gegard Mousasi at UFC Fight Night 41. He is currently #14 in the official UFC 185lb rankings.

UFC 184 is set to take place on February 28th at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California.

According to a report on yesterday's edition of UFC Tonight, Canadian UFC welterweight Rory MacDonald will not be getting the next shot at Robbie Lawler's 170lb title.

“I talked to Rory last night if he was getting ready for the title shot and he said nope, he’s not getting a title fight," said MMA reporter Ariel Helwani. "The UFC called him last week and told him he wouldn’t be fighting for it. He was pretty disappointed it."

Prior to the rematch between Lawler and Johny Hendricks at UFC 181 earlier this month, in which Lawler took the title from Hendricks via split-decision, it was expected that Rory would get a shot at the winner with the event likely taking place in his home country.

Now, with MacDonald apparently out of the title picture for the time being, it looks like Lawler vs Hendricks III will be the next welterweight championship fight to take place in the UFC Octagon. However, according to Hendricks' manager, the former champ has not yet been contacted by the UFC regarding a rubber match between he and Robbie.

MMA veterans Nate Quarry, Jon Fitch and Cung Le have filed a class action antitrust lawsuit against the UFC and its parent company, Zuffa, it was announced yesterday. All three athletes have fought for the UFC at some point in their respective careers, with Le still being under contract with the promotion.

Reactions to the news has been mixed, with some members of the MMA community voicing their support while others have strongly criticised the move.

“Let me break it down," UFC middleweight Michael Bisping said on UFC Tonight, "you've got three disgruntled ex-fighters and their careers didn’t pan out the way they wanted it to be, so guess what? They’re suing the UFC.”

According to Joseph Saveri, one of the lawyers involved with the case, "the UFC has systematically shut down its competitors over the years and essentially prevented any real competitive alternative promotion from coming into the market."

Those on the opposing side of the argument feel that it's simply a matter of the best rising to the top in the sport of MMA, with the UFC and its roster of fighters being justifiably head and shoulders above the competition.

“At the end of the day, nothing is promised to us," said retired MMA veteran Kenny Florian. "It’s a difficult business. You have to go out and win fights. We’re all in this together.”

For full details on the lawsuit, click here.

Top UFC light heavyweight contender is coming ever closer to finally getting a crack at his bitter rival Jon Jones and his UFC title at UFC 182 on January 3rd.

Jones and Cormier have a long and ongoing feud dating back several years. They were originally set to face each other at UFC 178 before an injury suffered by Jon in training postponed the bout. When he finally gets his hands on the reigning 205lb champ at the beginning of next month, DC plans to do far more than just take the belt from him.

"You won't see him winning 10 in a row any more," said Cormier on last night's edition of UFC Tonight. "He'll win some, but then he'll lose some, then he'll go searching for answers. He'll go up to heavyweight, he'll come back down. My goal is not only to beat him and take his belt, I'm coming to throw his whole career into a tailspin. Because not only is he going to lose this fight, it's going to put doubt and questions in his head, he'll never be able to answer them. You're going to see a different man whenever he gets out of that cage on January 3rd."

If he is successful in defeating Jones, Daniel expects that the sport's top pound-for-pound fighter will be granted an immediate rematch. But the former Olympic wrestler is prepared for that.

"I'll beat him on January 3rd, he'll come right back, I'll beat him again," said DC. "When a guy that believes the way that he is, he won't be the same. So not only will he lose to me, but his career is going to go in a tailspin. His head will be spinning. He won't know what's going on. This dude's in for a rude awakening. I'm looking to rid MMA of Jon Jones."

UFC 182 is set to take place on Saturday January 3rd at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Carla Esparza became the first ever UFC women's strawweight champion recently by defeating Rose Namajunas at the TUF 20 Finale. Watching the bout closely was 115lb contender Paige VanZant, who won her UFC debut against Kailin Curran via TKO at UFC Fight Night 57 last month.

“It was an awesome fight," Paige said of Esparza vs Namajunas on UFC Tonight. "You could really see how talented this weight division is. It’s a very stacked division. There are tough fights coming toward me, but I’m ready."

VanZant was originally set to appear as a competitor on season 20 of The Ultimate Fighter, but was pulled from the show before filming began as she did not meet the required minimum age of 21. Fortunately, she was still promised a fight in the UFC and watched TUF 20 closely while training for her UFC debut.

"I loved the season," she said. "I watched every fight. They’re all my potential opponents. I’m excited to fight someone from the TUF house next. I’ve seen every one fight, so I’m ready for them.”

The 4-1 fighter is placed #11 in the newly-released official UFC women's strawweight rankings and says she's hoping for a top-ten opponent next to take her up to the next level. As for the title picture in her burgeoning weight class, VanZant expects things to be extremely competitive.

"In our weight class, we don’t have a Ronda Rousey, but we have a lot of talented fighters," Paige told UFC Tonight hosts Kenny Florian and Michael Bisping. "In her division, there’s Ronda and not a lot of other challengers. I see the belt changing a lot in our division.”

We have a number of championship bouts and others with championship implications on display this Friday and Saturday, but that doesn't mean the others should be counted out.

Read below for a couple of fights from this week's Titan FC and UFC card that hardcore fans shouldn't miss.

Titan FC 32

Jack May vs Jon Madsen

Two former UFC heavyweights will battle for the vacant Titan FC heavyweight title this Friday.

Jack May was unsuccessful in his two-fight stint in the UFC, suffering back-to-back losses to Derrick Lewis and Shawn Jordan. Before that he had earned seven straight wins, all via KO/TKO, without a single defeat. Having never gone the distance in his MMA career, it's more than likely we'll see a stoppage here - win or lose for May.

Madsen is probably best-known as a member of Rashad Evans' team on season 10 of The Ultimate Fighter. He earned a four-fight win streak in the UFC before being cut off a TKO loss to Mike Russow. He returned to pro MMA earlier this year with a KO win over Matt Foster inside one minute after an almost three-year break from the sport. As an elite wrestler, it's probable he'll look to take this one to the ground, but could run into a big shot on the way.

 

UFC Fight Night 58

Antonio Carlos Jr. vs Patrick Cummins

Patrick Cummins looked sensational in his last outing against Kyle Kingsbury at UFC on FOX 12, winning one of the most lopsided decisions in UFC history thanks to his relentless pressure and wrestling skills. Now he has the chance to hand Antonio Carlos Jr. the first loss of his MMA career and hardcore fans should look forward to potentially seeing a further improved future title contender in Cummins this time around.

Carlos is 4-0 fighting out of Brazil with three wins via submission. He won his UFC debut against Vitor Miranda back in May and is taking a big step up taking on Cummins. His opponent's strength lies in taking this one to the canvas, but once the fight gets there is when Antonio is most dangerous, meaning this could prove highly entertaining for grappling fans.

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