Fabricio Werdum sent out a rather peculiar tweet last night for someone who claims to know nothing about going to the UFC. Out of nowhere, Werdum called out UFC heavyweight Brendan Schaub and proclaimed it to be a “great fight for the UFC fans.”
@BrendanSchaub I’m ready for you, anytime, anywhere!
It might be nothing, but the way Werdum threw out there does kind of insinuate that the fight might actually be in the works. To add more fuel to the fire, Schaub told ESPN in an interview yesterday that Werdum is someone he’d like to fight next.
I was on a four fight winning streak with a big knockout over Mirko Cro Cop, and I wanted a challenge. I wanted to do something nobody else had done, and that’s fight Nogueira in Brazil. He’s considered one of the best heavyweights of all time and I knew it was going to be a challenge. It was definitely hostile out there and I that got me up for it, but I was a little too aggressive. He caught me with a good shot and my night was over from there. It was definitely the most disappointing loss of my career and it’s a tough one to swallow, but being a heavyweight in the UFC and at this world class level, you can’t make a mistake. I made a mistake and I paid for it. It’s part of the game. I’m a knockout artist, I’m not the type of guy who is going to go out there and ride out a decision, and I think that’s why I’m a fan favorite, but I learned my lesson that night. I’m already back in the gym working on some things, but where do you go after you’ve fought guys like Cro Cop and Nogueira? I think a match between me and Fabricio Werdum would be something the fans would be into. There are a number of good match-ups out there, but that’s the one that comes to mind right now.
Again, it might be nothing, but why would Schaub single out a Strikeforce heavyweight unless he knows something we don’t?
This belongs in the rumor bin for now, but it sure does sound like something is at least being talked about behind the scenes.
Update: MMA Fighting’s Ben Fowlkes got to the bottom of what’s going on here. Apparently, Werdum was merely responding to Schaub’s interview. Here’s Schaub explaining why he mentioned Werdum in the first place.
“They kept talking about the Strikeforce [heavyweights], the heavyweight division, and I just mentioned that I thought there were bunch of good fights for me,” Schaub told MMA Fighting on Tuesday. “And I said, you know, I think [Fabricio] Werdum would be a fight that the UFC fans might like to see, but who knows?”
“I wasn’t calling him out, but man, he got word of that and I guess he just ran with it. I woke up this morning to all these Twitter mentions and text messages and I thought, what’s going on? Sure enough, I come to find out that he’s saying, ‘I’m ready to fight Brendan.’ Hey, I’m all for it, man.”
“To fight a guy like Werdum would be great. Me mentioning his name is nothing disrespectful at all. I’ve got nothing but respect for him. I think he’s ranked number five in the world and he’s one of the biggest names out there. That’s why I brought his name up, and I think he’d be one hell of a challenge for me. Tell me where to sign.”
Tatame also spoke to Werdum to get his side of the story.
“Let me tell you this story,” Werdum started. “I went to Mark’s and he (Schaub) was there. We didn’t trained together, but we did train on the same mat, the same techniques. On the next day, Mark called us to do a sparring and I went back there expecting to train with Schaub, but he wasn’t there. I was already excited to do it”.
Hours later, Werdum saw Brendan’s interview. “I think he underestimated me. I don’t know what he thought. Let’s do it, I’m in”.
So for now, there doesn’t seem to be a Werdum-Schuab fight in the works, but they both seem to want it. Of course, Werdum has to sign with the UFC, but if he does, it would make a solid match-up.