UFC 152 goes down tonight from the Air Canada Center in downtown Toronto, where UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones will put his title on the line against Brazilian fighting legend Vitor Belfort.
This marks the first time the man they call "The Phenom" will get a chance to fight on Canadian soil, and it is a pleasure and honor to have him in town. Belfort (21-9, 14 KO) has been fighting at an elite level since 1996 and has notable career knockouts over Tank Abbott, Wanderlei Silva, Randy Couture, Rich Franklin and Yoshihiro Akiyama.
Tonight, he gets a golden opportunity to shock the world against Jones. Not many are giving the veteran much of a chance at winning the fight.
Belfort won his first UFC title at the age of 27, and now at 34-years old, he only has limited time and opportunity left to snatch UFC gold and truly cement his name amongst the very best of all time. Belfort has lightning-fast hands with power in every inch, but will he be able to reach the crafty and lengthy champion when they tangle tonight?
If Vitor is willing to wade in fast and often against Jones, he may be able to catch him with something that could hurt the seemingly invincible champion. Belfort is on a two-fight win streak, coming off victories over Yoshihiro Akiyama and then Anthony Johnson in his only fight this year.
Belfort has certainly received the most love from fans everywhere during fight week here in Toronto, and it is well deserved. He has an MMA resume worthy of royalty, and he carries himself with the type of class that is a fine example for people young and old.
I am not sure he has enough to take out Jones tonight and win the light heavyweight title again in the final years of his career, but it doesn't really matter to me.
Belfort has been a legend in my mind already for years now.
His career and his class speak for themselves.
Dwight Wakabayashi is a featured columnist for Bleacher Report MMA and guest blogger for Sportsnet.ca.