Recently when it was announced that Vitor Belfort will rematch Dan Henderson on November 9th in Brazil, the location, rather than the fight itself, was the first thing some fans and pundits commented on. No, not because Brazil is an awesome and beautiful country (although that’s true), but because it will mark the third time in a row that Belfort will fight in his homeland. As you likely know, “The Phenom” is cleared to use testosterone-replacement-therapy in Brazil, and not in Nevada, which has prompted critics and conspiracy theorists to cry foul (to the great annoyance of UFC boss man Dana White).
So, why does Belfort continue to get booked to fight in Brazil? Well, on Monday’s edition of “The MMA Hour”, the punishing striker argued it’s because he’s a pretty big deal in his country, rather than because he’s cleared for TRT (comments via MMA Fighting.com).
“A lot of fighters are on TRT right now, (but) everybody’s saying that’s why I fight there,” Belfort said “But I believe the reason why I fight in Brazil is because I sell a lot in Brazil. I miss fighting in Las Vegas and other places, but I don’t see any problems that I’m not fighting (there) because I sell big in Brazil. Makes sense for them and makes sense for me.”
The 36 year-old fighter also had this to say about the argument that by fighting in Brazil, his treatments aren’t being strictly monitored.
“Brazil is the only place that they do blood tests after the fight,” Belfort said, before alluding to Henderson, who has been cleared for TRT in the past. “Now, I’m fighting a guy who’s on TRT too. They are very surprised that they will have to test blood too. Two months before the fight I have to do blood tests, at least once a month. I do that on my own every week too. It’s important. I’m just trying to be fair with everybody and also with myself.”
It’s an issue that just isn’t going away, despite the fact this upcoming bout is a big one for both men. A Belfort loss could set back his title shot hopes at 185 (whether he thinks so or not), and Hendo will be looking to avoid a third consecutive loss.
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