You don’t need to wait for Dana White to announce contender matches for the middleweight division, (as he teased he would at UFC 149) because the fighters are setting them up on their own as of late. After getting shot down by Chris Weidman for a match, Vitor finally responded to Alan Belcher’s request for a bout. Eventually, Alan upped the ante proposing for a match in Belfort’s home country of Brazil at UFC 153. The pay-per-view is set for October 13 at Rio de Janeiro’s HSBC arena, and the event will be headlined by the postponed Featherweight title fight between challenger Erik Koch and champion Jose Aldo.
Vitor lost his title fight against current champion Anderson Silva all the way back in February of 2011. He has rebounded with knockout wins over an over weight Anthony Johnson and Yoshihiro Akiyama. Unfortunately an elbow injury kept him out of a rematch with fellow Ultimate Fighter: Brazil coach Wanderlei Silva, and that match is in doubt of ever happening. There was talk of Vitor going back to 205 after dropping out of the bout, but it looks like he will stay at middleweight in hopes of getting another shot at the title. Standing in his way is veteran UFC Middleweight Alan Belcher.
Belcher has been calling for a shot at Anderson Silva almost longer than anyone in the UFC, and it is not his fault that he has been kept away from that shot though. Right when he was about to face former title challenger Demian Maia in a main event of a Fight Night, Belcher suffered a detached retina. The injury kept him out of the sport for almost two years. He has wasted no time since his return finishing two opponents in less than eight minutes combined. One of them was the ever tough Rousimar Palhares. Unfortunately, without a marquee name over a former title challenger it is hard to market him for a title shot in the main event of a PPV. If he is able to beat and finish Vitor in his next bout he could make a real claim toward a title shot.
This fight may only be verbal at this time, but is likely that the UFC will have no issues making official shortly.