It's safe to say UFC middleweight contender Vitor Belfort was near a computer this week because he certainly saw the comments from UFC president Dana White about his chances of getting another shot at Anderson Silva.
Belfort was knocked out by Silva at UFC 126 in one of the most spectacular finishes in MMA history.
Since that loss, Belfort has racked up a 4-1 record with his only loss coming to UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones in a fight he took on short notice. His other four fights have all been finishes inside the first two rounds.
So when White was asked about Belfort receiving another shot at Silva on Thursday, the UFC president didn't seem too enthusiastic about the idea and believes that the long-reigning champion would have similar thoughts on the rematch.
"I'm not saying that Vitor couldn't get the next shot, or couldn't get a shot soon, but if you're Anderson Silva you're looking for another challenge," White said on Thursday. "It would be a hard argument. You could make a better argument that Dan Henderson should get the next shot. Yeah, he hasn't looked impressively and he hasn't won, but (Anderson) didn't beat him as bad as he did Vitor."
Needless to say Belfort was not happy at all to read those comments.
So on Friday, Belfort took to Twitter with a rather long message in response to the claim that Silva would not likely be interested in a rematch with him, nor would the UFC push for it much based on White's comments.
Belfort first took aim at the idea that his knockout loss to Silva was any different than the recent heavyweight fights that took place between Cain Velasquez and Junior dos Santos.
It's incredible how it seems as though Silva is the one picking his opponents. Think about this: Cain got knocked out in a devastating loss to Cigano, and after one fight he gets another title shot. Then after being massacred by Velasquez for five rounds, now Cigano gets another chance for the title. In order for a rematch to take place, the champion must accept a challenge. Both Cigano and Velasquez accepted. But I, on the other hand, crushed all the contenders that were put in front of me, and it seems that I have earned nothing, not even the respect I deserve for all I have done for the sport. My spot is the highest of any division contender in the UFC, and it is only logical and fair for me to be given a shot at the title.
Belfort scoffed at the idea that just because Silva knocked him out means that he can't ever get a chance to earn a victory back against the reigning middleweight champion.
Why is it that I don't have a title shot? Just because one time, Anderson happened to land a kick?! I can assure you that given a second chance, that would never happen again. I have proven myself over and over.
Belfort also reacted to the idea of Silva being involved in superfights that have been teased for years. White has stated on several occasions that if Silva is victorious in his bout on Saturday against Chris Weidman, that they may soon start looking at putting together fights against either UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre or light heavyweight champ Jon Jones.
There is even the opening to do a superfight with former boxing champion Roy Jones Jr., who will be in attendance at UFC 162. None of the names mentioned, however, were Belfort's, and he's not happy about it one bit.
It seems that Anderson wants to go on and do super fights or whatever. How can he think of doing a super fight right now when he has a contender of my caliber waiting to compete for the belt. I have no problem with super fights, as long as they don’t tie up the belt from other great contenders who deserve a chance to accomplish the greatest moments of their career. Nobody should be able to strip me of the dreams that God gave me and that I have worked so hard to achieve! It doesn't matter who is the champion or how many title defenses they have, they should fight who is the number 1 contender in the sport, and that person is me! I really can’t understand any reason why Anderson would refuse to fight me, unless he was scared that the result would be different this time.
Belfort then took aim at the current contender who will face Silva on Saturday night in the main event. The bout will pit Chris Weidman—a fighter with five total fights in the UFC—against Silva with the middleweight title on the line.
Belfort believes his track record speaks for itself, not to mention the list of contenders he's knocked off lately including former Strikeforce champion Luke Rockhold and top five middleweight Michael Bisping.
Mind you, I have no personal beef against Anderson or any other fighter. I'm just talking about every fighter's dream to win the belt - to fight for the world championship! That's what this business is all about. If Chris Weidman can get a title shot just by defeating Munoz, imagine how much I deserve this after devastating everyone they put in front of me, not to mention all that I have contributed to the history of the sport. I deserve more respect for what I have done, am still doing, and am about to do.
Belfort also took great exception to the mention of Dan Henderson as a possible opponent for Silva ahead of him. Silva dispatched of Henderson as well, but it took until the second round to do so, whereas he knocked out Belfort in the first round of their fight in a fairly one-sided affair.
"Come on - they even say that it makes more sense for Silva to fight Hendo??? What a joke!" Belfort stated.
His hope remains that if Silva is victorious on Saturday night, the UFC will come to their senses and offer him a shot at the title again. For his part, Silva has never really said much about Belfort getting a rematch, although the question has rarely come up since his win over him in 2011.
After Belfort's latest Twitter rant, it's safe to say should Silva win at UFC 162, the question will come up now.
I trust that if Anderson keeps the belt on Saturday night or if Chris Weidman wins, they will accept the challenge to fight me next, because I earned the spot. Dana White, MAKE IT HAPPEN!
Belfort will obviously be a very interested viewer to see what happens on Saturday night. It remains to be seen if his impassioned plea will make a difference to White or Silva if he wins at UFC 162.
Damon Martin is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report and all quotes were obtained firsthand unless otherwise noted
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