The "Big Dog" looks to go smaller: Ricardo Almeida eyes 170 pounds by MMAjunkie.com Staff on Apr 04, 2009 at 3:30 pm ET UFC, PRIDE and Pancrase veteran Ricardo "Big Dog" Almeida (10-3 MMA, 3-3 UFC), despite coming off of a win at Wednesday's UFC Fight Night 18, will look to drop from the middleweight division to 170 pounds. Almeida made the announcement in a recent interview with UFC.com. "I'd like to let it be known on the UFC website (that) my plans are to drop to 170 pounds," Almeida said. "My team has been saying that I'm too small to fight these big guys at 185 (pounds)." A Renzo Gracie student, Almeida returned to the UFC after a near-four-year hiatus from the sport. After a submission win over UFC newcomer Rob Yundt at UFC 81 in February 2008, Almeida has since gone 1-1 in a pair of lackluster performances with Matt Horwich and Patrick Cote. Almeida hopes a drop in weight could assist him in putting on more memorable performances. "It's a choice of being one of the smallest middleweights and among the biggest welterweights," Almeida said. "It's definitely going to be a big sacrifice, but this is the UFC. You don't have better fighters than here." Almeida has won eight of his past nine fights - contested over a six-and-a-half-year period. Among those victories are notable wins over Ryon Chonan, Nate Marquardt and Kazuo Misaki.