The drama surrounding Anderson Silva and his next title defense is not over.
It seemingly was last month when Vitor Belfort defeated Rich Franklin and Dana White subsequently confirmed to the LA Times that Anderson and Vitor verbally agreed to fight for the title at UFC 108. However, that was before Anderson underwent arthroscopic elbow surgery that didn’t go quite as planned.
“They found some things that they weren’t aware of (during the surgery), which is a good thing,” said Soares. “If we’re going to be fighting for the title, we want to make sure Anderson’s 100-percent.”
“It’s doctor’s decision,” [Silva] added in English. “My elbow is hurt, but doctor Chad says come back to training, come back to fight.”
On Wednesday, the champion is scheduled to begin physical therapy after getting his surgery stitches removed. Soares says a decision on Silva’s fight-readiness will be made in 10 days.
That’s understandable. If he’s injured, he’s injured and can’t fight. It happens all the time. The story doesn’t end there though. As with Dan Henderson and Nate Marquardt, Silva doesn’t believe Vitor deserves a title shot, plus Ed Soares is questioning whether Vitor can even make weight.
Second, Silva and Soares believe Belfort doesn’t deserve a title shot. Soares expressed their misgivings in a conversation with White prior to Silva’s appearance Monday evening, though he failed to sway White.
Soares maintains a title eliminator between Nate Marquardt and Dan Henderson is the most logical idea for Silva’s next contender, given their recent victories and Henderson’s 2007 win over Belfort in PRIDE Fighting Championships.
“Vitor has not fought in the UFC at 185 pounds,” [Soares] said. “Now, I know people can say Anderson fought for the belt after one fight, and that’s true, but he fought at 185 pounds. At 195 pounds, he didn’t make weight, at first. So he couldn’t make weight at 195 pounds, but now he’s going to fight for the title at 185 pounds?”
True, Vitor missed weight on his first attempt at UFC 103, but he later said in one of his video blogs it was merely because the scale in the hotel’s gym was inaccurate. Considering Vitor made 185 twice in Affliction without any problems, I think he deserves the benefit of the doubt.
The good news is despite their misgivings with the match-up, Soares says they’ll accept the fight out of respect for Dana, but if the doctor won’t clear Anderson to fight, then that’s obviously a different story.