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Vitor Belfort and Wanderlei Silva to Coach TUF Brazil

After 14 successful seasons and TUF 15 on the way, The Ultimate Fighter is headed to another country for the first time, as The Ultimate Fighter Brazil will premier in March 2012.

Brazilian middleweights Vitor Belfort and Wanderlei Silva were announced as coaches for TUF Brazil at Tuesday’s UFC 142 press conference and will square off after the season, possibly at a May stadium event in Brazil that will likely be headlined by UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva.

TUF Brazil will feature Brazilian middleweights and lightweights competing for a guaranteed contract with the organization. Tryouts for the season have already begun, with the UFC expected to announce cast members some time next month.

The twelve week season will begin in late March and airs on Globo TV in Brazil, while Fuel TV is expected to air the show in the U.S. TUF Brazil will feature live fights throughout the season like TUF 15, which airs on FX with coaches Dominick Cruz and Urijah Faber.

Belfort and Silva have fought previously, with Belfort defeating ‘The Axe Murderer” at UFC Brazil in October 1998. That was the last UFC event held in Brazil until the organization returned at UFC 134 in August 2011.

Belfort (20-9) last fought at UFC 133 in August, defeating Yoshihiro Akiyama in under two minutes. He is scheduled to fight Anthony Johnson at UFC 142 in January. Because the season does not begin filming until March, Belfort’s training for Johnson will not be affected.

Silva (34-11-1) is coming off a comeback win over Cung Le at UFC 139 in November. Although ‘The Axe Murderer’ is just 3-6 in his last nine fights, Silva has his sights solely set on avenging his loss to Belfort.

“I think this is one of the biggest rematches in all of modern MMA,” Silva said at the press conference. “I’m very pleased to give this to my fans and to once again fight in Brazil. This is a dream.”

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Pictured: Vitor Belfort and Wanderlei Silva


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