(The unstoppable force meets the immovable asshole. Photo courtesy of MMAFighting.com)
According to the LA Times’ Lance Pugmire, a middleweight title rematch between Anderson Silva and Chael Sonnen is being penciled in for the UFC’s next New Year’s Eve or Super Bowl weekend card, after Silva recovers from the rib injury that reportedly plagued him before the fight. Unlike other immediate UFC title rematches that have been booked recently — see esp., Machida vs. Rua II, Penn vs. Edgar II — Silva and Sonnen’s first meeting didn’t end in a close/controversial judges’ decision. Instead, Silva sunk a triangle-armbar with less than two minutes remaining in the fifth round, after getting out-wrestled and battered for the previous four frames.
No matter who’s "in line" for the next title shot in the middleweight division, the matchmaking argument would seem to be that Sonnen is still the biggest threat to the Spider, and he deserves another try after coming just short of victory at UFC 117. Can Sonnen learn from his mistakes, or does a healthy Anderson Silva run straight through him? And are you interested in seeing the Silva vs. Sonnen sequel in the first place?
Giving further weight to the Pugmire report is Vitor Belfort‘s recent statement that he won’t be facing Sonnen next. As he told Sherdog: “I talked to Lorenzo (Fertitta) this week and will return in November. I just asked him to not be (on the November card in Germany). I’m tired of traveling. I would like to return to fighting here in America. According to my conversation with Lorenzo, my opponent will not be Sonnen, but another guy that will be decided soon.”