The belt is in the mail…

The whole MMA world is well aware by now of WEC middleweight champion Paulo Filho coming in an astonishing seven pounds overweight at Tuesday’s weigh-in, and his lackluster bout with Chael Sonnen at WEC 36.

Because of Filho’s issues with weight, the bout was knocked from its championship perch into a plain old three-round fight. Still, Filho reportedly put his belt – if not his official standing as champion – on the line against Sonnen.

After the weigh-ins, when the bout was re-negotiated as a three-rounder, Sonnen’s trainer, Matt Lindland, told, “(Filho’s) cornermen told us that they would walk across the cage and hand Chael the belt if he wins. When Chael whoops his ass, I expect them to live up to their word.”

Well, Sonnen didn’t exactly whoop Filho’s ass, as it were, but he did walk away from the bout with a unanimous decision victory. In the cage on Wednesday night, however, no one walked over to Sonnen to hand him the belt.

On his way out of the competition area, Lindland told that Filho’s corner said that they would hand the belt over in the dressing room.

Then came the post-fight press conference. What say Lindland and Sonnen? “No belt, yet.”

Later that night, Sonnen was walking around the Hard Rock complex… no belt.

Contacted by on Friday via text message to see if he ever received the belt, Sonnen responded, “No. His manager did call and said that it’s in the mail.”

Now that’s a new one…