UFC president Dana White has already indicated that he has plans for Anderson Silva regardless of the outcome of his UFC 162 headlining bout with Chris Weidman, but could Vitor Belfort make a strong enough case to disrupt those plans?
White said that if Silva were to lose to Weidman at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Saturday, he would be granted an immediate rematch should he want it. If the greatest middleweight champion in UFC history wins, White believes that he can finally put him in a super fight with either Jon Jones or Georges St-Pierre.
Belfort, however, has other ideas. He believes that he should get the winner of Silva vs. Weidman, no matter who is the victor.
“@danawhite the fans and me are very excited to see who is going to (be) my next opponent on this Saturday I deserve the winner!” Belfort tweeted on Tuesday.
@danawhite the fans and me are very excited to see who is going to my next opponent on this Saturday I deserve the winner!
— Vitor Belfort (@vitorbelfort) July 2, 2013
Belfort’s case is an interesting one, but timing could prove to be the key.
Silva knocked him out in the first round of their meeting two and a half years ago. Belfort has since amassed a 4-1 record, losing to UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones, but winning all three of his middleweight bouts.
Those three middleweight bouts consisted of Yoshiro Akiyama, Michael Bisping, and incoming Strikeforce champion Luke Rockhold, which makes a strong case for another title shot despite the previous outcome.
The question if Silva wins, however, is whether or not he’d be willing to wait around for Jones and St-Pierre to fight their next bouts, which are scheduled for September and November, respectively.
If Silva loses, it is highly unlikely that White would renege on his promise of an immediate rematch. And considering Silva’s seven-year reign as UFC middleweight champion, it seems just as unlikely that he would decline the opportunity to regain his belt.
In this day and age of fighters campaigning via social media to get the fights that they want, Belfort is sure to keep lobbying for the winner until White says that it won’t happen.
(Photo courtesy of UFC.com)