The highly anticipated middleweight title fight between UFC 185-pound champion Anderson Silva and Vitor Belfort is off of the UFC 112 card. The news was confirmed by Yahoo! Sports’ Kevin Iole after originally being reported by Tatame.com.
Tatame.com grabbed a quote from one of Belfort’s coaches Jayme Sandall, who stated, “He (Belfort) was training but not using the arm for a long time because of the injury.”
“The Phenom” earned the title shot after a first round devastation over Rich Franklin at UFC 103. While many considered the title shot to be premature, Silva has essentially defeated everyone in the middleweight division, and Belfort, a former UFC champion, seemed to have as good a chance as any.
Silva, who has become one of the most dominant champions in UFC history, has not seen action in the octagon since UFC 101 where he decimated Forrest Griffin in a light heavyweight fixture. “The Spider” has not defended his belt since defeating Thales Leites at UFC 97.
While no replacement has been named, Chael Sonnen’s victory over Nate Marquardt at UFC 109 moved him into the top position in terms of middleweight contenders. However, Sonnen’s medical suspension will likely not work with the time frame for the April event. However, UFC president Dana White told Yahoo! Sports that Silva would remain on the card.
The UFC will move forward with its debut in the Middle East in Abu Dhabi on April 10 with a lightweight championship between BJ Penn and Frankie Edgar. Matt Hughes and Renzo Gracie will also be fighting on the main card.
Stay tuned to Inside Fights for breaking news and updates on the situation in the UFC middleweight division.
Tags: anderson silva, Chael Sonnen, forrest griffin, Matt Hughes, Mixed Martial Arts, nate marquardt, Renzo Gracie, Thales Leites, UFC, UFC 112, Vitor Belfort