When word surfaced recently that the UFC is trying to book a bout between Vitor Belfort and Tim Kennedy, the news prompted more than a few responses containing the words “really?” or “seriously?”. After all, Belfort hasn’t been shy about the fact that he wants to fight for the middleweight belt next, and prior to the announcement of Weidman-Silva II, he didn’t seem keen on fighting men like Gegard Mousasi.
Kennedy tweeted news of the bout Friday, and then UFC boss man Dana White also confirmed to MMA Fighting.com that they were trying to sign the fight. Now, however, Belfort’s manager and wife Joana Prado has commented on the proposal to the Brazilian publication Globo.com, and her response is definitely in keeping with her husband’s recent campaigning (quote via MMA Junkie.com).
“It doesn’t make sense that Vitor, who is No. 1 in the rankings, should fight against No. 2, No. 6 or No. 10 in his weight class,” Prado said. “His next fight in the middleweight class will be against the winner of Chris Weidman vs. Anderson Silva. If the UFC wishes him to fight in any class above middleweight, we are at their disposal. It can be anyone, Tim Kennedy, even Roy Nelson, but it has to be at 205 pounds or heavyweight – he’ll even fight as a heavyweight. Vitor wants to fight, but in his weight class, only if for the belt.”
Considering Belfort couldn’t be tapped for a bout with the winner of Weidman-Silva II until next spring or even summer, “The Phenom” apparently understands it’s in his best interest to fight in the meantime. In theory, fighting at 205 pounds is a good way to stay active as well as protect his #2 ranking at middleweight. What if, however, Kennedy agrees to fight Belfort at light-heavyweight and defeats him? Wouldn’t it tarnish his standing at 185 as well?
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