As stated in the Submission of the Month piece, May was absolutely loaded with wild finishes and fights.
From Daron Cruickshank scoring a devastating KO in Japan, to Fabio Maldonado getting slept by Nikita Krylov in Russia, devastating knockouts happened all over the globe this month.
Sadly, we can’t have 30 winners.
Lyoto Machida vs. Vitor Belfort
Just like the Submission of the Month, May’s Knockout of the Month took place in Rio de Janeiro at UFC 224. So, those fans chose one hell of a show to attend.
On the main card, there was a middleweight throwback fight of sorts as two Brazilian legends went to battle. Former light heavyweight champions Lyoto Machida and Vitor Belfort took to the cage in front of all of their Brazilian faithful.
After a… less-than-stellar opening round, the Jeunesse Arena was starting to get a bit restless considering all the action they had seen earlier in the night.
But it didn’t take long for that to change. As, less than a minute into round two, Lyoto Machida landed his signature front kick right on the chin of Vitor Belfort. Knocking him unconscious on impact. The building erupted, and Machida took no time to celebrate. He instead bowed at the feet on a downed Belfort.
And that did the job. Lyoto Machida wins his second-straight. First beating a hot prospect in Eryk Anders while fighting at home, and then knocking out a fellow Brazilian legend while fighting in Brazil.
After completing his 32nd fight as a professional mixed martial artist, the karate specialist improves to a cool 24-8 as he turns down to clock to KO yet another legend with a frontkick. This – seemingly – was Belfort’s retirement fight as he left his gloves in the cage post-loss.
Machida sent another legend into retirement back in 2011 with a very similar kick, knocking out Randy Couture at the UFC’s inaugural Toronto show.
Lyoto Machida gets May 2018’s Knockout of the Month with a kick that shall be dubbed; The Retirement Kick™.
Go watch the full fight, finish, and aftermath here.
Not every knockout can be dubbed Knockout of the Month, but considering how many we have seen in the past 30 days alone, there can be a first, second, and third place!
1. Lyoto Machida def. Vitor Belfort via KO2
2. Daron Cruickshank def. Koshi Matsumoto via KO1
3. Nikita Krylov def. Fabio Maldonado via KO2, Title Win
Fight Nights Global 87
That’s hardly all. There are tons honorable mentions to get to – all with videos! Before continuing, check out Dricus Du Plessis pick up his third consecutive title via KO in last month’s Knockout of the Month.
- WFCA 48 | Magomed Geroev def. Oscar Sosa via KO1 (Punches)
- WFCA 48 | Murad Abdulaev def. Goity Dazaev via KO1 (Spinning Headkick + Punches)
- TKO 43 | Adam Dyczka def. Icho Larenas via KO1 (Straight Right)
- TKO 43 | Marc-Andre Barriault def. Brendan Kornberger via KO3 (Standing Elbows + GNP, Title Defense)
- LFA 39 | Ian Heinisch def. Gabriel Checco via KO1 (Straight Right + GNP, Title Win)
- ACB 86 | Denis Kanakov def. Abdul Azim Badakshi via KO1 (Right Uppercut + GNP)
- ACB 86 | Ciro Rodrigues def. Beslan Isaev via KO2 (Standing Elbow)
- RIZIN 10 | Kyoji Horiguchi def. Ian McCall via KO1 (Jab + GNP)
- Battle on Volga 4 | Marta Waliczek def. Karina Vasilenko via KO3 (Left Headkick, Title Win)
- Battle on Volga 4 | Ramis Teregulov def. Jose Agustin via KO1 (Right Headkick)
- Shooto Brasil 83 | Diego Domingos def. Maikon Muniz via KO3 (Left Hook)
- Shooto Brasil 83 | Daniel Lacerda def. Yarlei Martins via KO1 (Headkicks + GNP)
- Combate 20 | Lizbeth Lopez Silva def. Brendan Enriquez via KO2 (Knee)
- M-1 Challenge 91 | Rafal Kijanczuk def. Matt Clempner via KO1 (Right Hook + GNP)
- ONE: Grit and Glory | Leandro Ataides def. Vitaly Bigdash via KO3 (Superman Punch + Punches)
- BAMMA 35 | Fabian Edwards def. Claudio Conti via KO1 (Body Kick)
- UCMMA 55 | Alfie Davis def. Rico Allen via KO1 (Spinning Body Kick)
- Shamrock FC 305 | Jason Stevenson def. Steve Mutzu via KO1 (Right Hook)
- Bellator 199 | Darren Winn def. Ahmed White via KO1 (Straight Right + GNP)
- Bellator 199 | Cheick Kongo def. Javy Ayala via KO1 (Right Hook)
- Bellator 199 | Ryan Bader def. King Mo via KO1 (Jab + GNP, HW GP)
- UFC 224 | Elizeu Zaleski def. Sean Strickland via KO1 (Wheel Kick + GNP)
- UFC 224 | John Lineker def. Brian Kelleher via KO3 (Left Hook)
- Collision Fight Ultimate 9 | Jose Trindade def. Sandro Montegroso via KO2 (Slam, Title Defense)
- Shooto Japan | Yosuke Saruta def. Itchaku Murata via KO3 (Overhand Right + GNP. Title Defense)
- Driller No Mercy 7 | Andre Yatkis def. Noah Hawkins via KO2 (Straight Right)
- ONE: Unstoppable Dreams | Amir Khan def. Sung Jong Lee via KO2 (GNP)
- Combate 21 | Rodrigo Vargas def. Mike De La Torre via KO1 (Left Headkick)
- Superior Challenge 17 | Serar Altas def. Luan Jashari via KO1 (Right Headkick)
- UFC FN 129 | Gabriel Benitez def. Humberto Bandenay via KO1 (Slam + GNP)
- UFC FN 129 | Polina Botelho def. Syuri Kondo via KO1 (Body Kick+ Punches)
- UFC FN 129 | Vicente Luque def. Chad Laprise via KO1 (Left Hook + GNP)
- WOCS 50 | Anderson Silva def. Julio Cesar Lim via KO1 (Overhand Right)
- Pancrase 296 | Tom Santos def. Kenichiro Togashi via KO1 (Right Hook)
- Octagon Fighters 5 | Jose Sanchez def. Jesus Abdo via KO1 (Overhand Left)
- Fusion FC 32 | Luigui Quezada def. Victor Arata via KO1 (Jumping Right Switchkick + GNP)
- M-1 Challenge 92 | Alexey Ilyenko def. Helson Henriques via KO3 (Left Headkick + Punches)
- Bellator 200 | Phil Davis def. Linton Vassell via KO3 (Right Headkick)
- Bellator 200 | Mike Shipman def. Carl Noon via KO1 (GNP)
- FEN 21 | Marian Ziolkowski def. Patryk Nowak via KO1 (Straight Right)
- LFA 40 | Kevin Aguilar def. Thanh Le via KO1 (Punches, Title Defense)
- Oktagon 6 | Michal Kotalik def. Pavel Sabadashi via KO1 (Right Headkick + GNP)
- Shooto Brasil 84 | Lucas Ananias def. Douglas Moreno via KO3 (Body Kick)
- Rebel FC 8 | Askhar Mozharov def. Cheick Kone via TKO1 (Spinning Headkick)