News broke late last night that surging yet stubborn UFC middleweight contender Vitor Belfort wanted to face Chael Sonnen at a higher weight than 185 while he waits for a hoped-for title shot against the winner of the Anderson Silva-Chris Weidman rematch.
Sonnen quickly accepted the bout, but added the stipulation that Belfort put his perceived number one contender status on the line. I’m not sure that will ever happen, because I doubt that Belfort would ever put that on the line.
Sonnen also set forth a date of UFC 168, but that’s also going to be a very tough sell, as NSAC commissioner Keith Kizer has repeatedly stated that Belfort will not be licensed to fight in Las Vegas due to his past issues with anabolic steroids.
Despite all of those roadblocks, UFC president Dana White has a different idea altogether for Belfort. When Belfort and his wife/manager Joana Prado rejected White’s proposal of a bout against Tim Kennedy earlier this week, the door was left open to “The Phenom” fighting at higher weights.
And White thinks he has just the opponent in mind. Speaking at yesterday’s UFC World Tour 2013 presser, White put forth the following possibility:
"Then let's do him and Rashad (Evans). He doesn't want to fight Tim Kennedy? Let's fight Rashad at 205."
That’s an interesting proposition, but also one that could be unlikely to materialize, considering that Evans and Belfort have been training partners on the Blackzilians team. It’s starting to seem like Belfort’s insistence of only wanting a title shot at middleweight is beginning to wear thin on White and the UFC.
While Belfort has definitely earned it with his incredible performances this year, there will always be the black cloud of TRT enhancement hanging over his head. For that reason, it will be difficult to find a suitable location to fight outside of Brazil.
If he wants to wait for the winner of Silva-Weidman, he’ll be on the shelf for quite some time. Who should be Vitor Belfort’s next opponent?