With Phil Davis out of the UFC 133 main event, Lyoto Machida has turned down a rematch with fellow former light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans that would have headlined the August 6 pay-per-view event in Philadelphia, according to multiple reports.
UFC President Dana White initially told Yahoo Sports that Machida was set for the Aug. 6 headliner in Philadelphia after Tito Ortiz turned down his own rematch with Evans fresh off his first win in five years over Ryan Bader earlier this month.
However, White quickly clarified that he could only confirm Davis’ injury, while Tatame, citing manager Ed Soares, said Machida wouldn’t accept the matchup with less than a month to prepare.
White told MMA Fighting that fellow 205-pounder Rich Franklin, who’s scheduled to fight Antonio Rogerio Nogueira in the UFC 133 co-main event, is not under consideration to move up to face Evans.
Evans (15-1-1) dropped the 205-pound title in his only loss to date when he suffered a second-round knockout to Machida in their first meeting in 2009. “Suga” has since earned decision wins over Thiago Silva and Quinton “Rampage” Jackson to near another shot at the belt currently held by Jon Jones, who puts it on the line against Jackson in September.
Meanwhile, Machida (17-2) followed up the win with a controversial decision over Mauricio “Shogun” Rua before suffering back-to-back losses to Rua and Jackson in 2010. “The Dragon” returned to the win column with a highlight reel KO of Randy Couture in April.
It is not yet known when Davis will be able to return to the Octagon from his knee injury.