UFC 142 Fight Card: Is Vitor Belfort's Career Coming to a Close?

Antwyn JacksonContributor IIJanuary 14, 2012

Yes, Vitor Belfort's career is coming to a close, but it's not a sad occasion like the end of Chuck Liddell's career or more recently Mirko "Cro-Cop" Filipovic's career.  

His career is coming to a close simply because of his age, that's it.  He's still ferocious.  He's still deadly with his hands.  He's still one of the best finishers in the business.  Most importantly, he still has the mind of a champion and a heart of a lion.  The question is his motivation.  Does he have enough in the tank to make another title run.

There are a lot of things to consider when looking at the future for Belfort.  First thing, if he is motivated by getting the belt, then he has to hope Anderson Silva either retires or is beat by Chael Sonnen or Mark Munoz.  There's no way that he gets a rematch with the champion any time soon, considering the epic fashion in which he lost.

Second, is he tied to the middleweight division?  If he wants to get another shot at the belt, he could look to go back to the light heavyweight division and try to make waves there, but that is a very difficult hill to climb.  However, with the fact that Jon Jones is wiping out other contenders, who knows what could happen?

Consider this list: Anderson Silva, Alistair Overeem, Randy Couture, Tito Ortiz, Dan Henderson, Kazushi Sakuraba and Chuck Liddell.  Those the men who have defeated Belfort in his career.  Looks like a list of Hall of Famers.  If Belfort's career is indeed coming to a close and he doesn't get the elusive title-shot he feels he deserves, he has a career anyone can be proud of.  

Here's to hoping he does get one more chance at the gold.