Vitor Belfort believes he’s made the case for another title shot, by blasting both Luke Rockhold and Michael Bisping in highlight reel fashion, but the surging vet might want to root for Chris Weidman this weekend at UFC 162. The reason being that according to UFC President Dana White, asking Anderson Silva to fight Belfort for a second time could be a tough sell, despite the fighter’s recent performances.
While speaking to the media today about Belfort’s title shot prospects, White relayed the following (quote via MMA Junkie.com):
“He’s looked great, but the hard position that Vitor is in is when you talk about a rematch for him, it’s like, [Silva] kicked him in the face in the first 60 seconds in one of the most devestating knockouts of all-time. So when you go back to Anderson Silva, who’s in the twilight of his career, and you say to a guy like Anderson, ‘Eh, what about Vitor?’ He’d say, ‘I annihilated Vitor. I made it look like Vitor isn’t even a fighter we should have been fighting.'”
White has a point, as at this stage of Silva’s career, the 38 year-old legend doesn’t have a lot to gain by fighting Belfort once again. Jon Jones has relayed similar sentiments about facing Lyoto Machida for a second time, and the light-heavyweight champ is only 25 years old.
The UFC President reportedly went on to say that Belfort could still be tapped for another fight with Silva, but noted that the middleweight champ is likely more interested in taking on another challenge, like a “super fight” with Jones next. Of course, the UFC would be more than happy to book that fight, or a bout with Georges St. Pierre (although that’s probably not going to happen), if Silva gets by Weidman.
Now if Weidman wins, White has already relayed that Silva would be granted an automatic rematch if he desires, but it looks like Belfort’s title shot journey could be shorter if the “All-American” pulls off the upset.
UFC 162 goes down Saturday night at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, and the main card will be available via pay-per-view.