Some fans consider UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman's two victories over former title-holder Anderson "The Spider" Silva as flukes.
But Brazilian legend Lyoto "The Dragon" Machida doesn't buy these arguments.
Weidman became the UFC champion in July 2012 when he knocked out Silva in the second round of their title match, which saw the "Spider" put his hands down and ended up eating a huge left hook.
In their second fight, Silva broke his left leg to give Weidman a technical knockout victory and allow the American to retain the title.
Because of the strange ending to both fights, some fans still believe that Weidman's victories were not valid. But no less than Machida – a former light-heavyweight champion – said the American’s wins were no fluke.
"There is no doubt that he's the champion," Machida said in an interview with Fox Sports. "He's the best there is in the weight class right now."
"He won those fights," Machida stressed. "You can't take away those merits."
Machida will get his chance to test Weidman, as he will challenge the champion for the title on July 5 at UFC 175 in Las Vegas.
It will only be Machida’s third fight in the middleweight division since making his debut at the weight class in October 2013 with a first-round knockout of Mark Muñoz.
"I feel like I'm fighting more guys who are actually my weight," said Machida. "I definitely feel faster in this weight class. I'm going up against guys the same size as me now."
"Before, I was fighting guys much heavier," added the Brazilian fighter, who won the UFC light heavyweight belt in 2009 by beating Rashad Evans.