According to an MMAJunkie report, the UFC has officially removed Vitor Belfort from UFC 175 (July 5th, Las Vegas). Belfort was left without an opponent after Chael Sonnen was pulled off the card himself due to a failed drug test, and the promotion reportedly hasn’t been able to find a suitable replacement opponent for the Phenom.*
Belfort’s appearance at UFC 175 was always tentative, pending the results of a June 17th licensing hearing, which was expected to address his own random drug test failure in February. But now, MMAJunkie reports, Belfort has also been removed from the NSAC agenda for next week, as he’s no longer in immediate need of a license to compete in Nevada.
A timetable for Belfort’s return has not been set…but I’m just saying, if he competes in Brazil again without settling his business in Nevada first, it’ll just add another sorry-ass layer to the biggest drug-fiasco of the year.
* Or, the promotion wanted to avoid the embarrassment of Belfort being denied a license in that June 17th NSAC hearing, which would surely generate some uncomfortable headlines leading up to their biggest pay-per-view event of the year. But hey, I’m just a guy over here click-clackin’ away on the keyboard, calling it as I see it. If you want to take the UFC’s official statements at face value, have fun with that.
The current, slightly-less-stacked lineup of UFC 175 is after the jump…
Chris Weidman vs. Lyoto Machida
Ronda Rousey vs. Alexis Davis
Urijah Faber vs. Alex Caceres
Matt Mitrione vs. Stefan Struve
Uriah Hall vs. Thiago “Marreta” Santos
Chris Camozzi vs. Bruno Santos
Guilherme Vasconcelos vs. Luke Zachrich
Ildemar Alcantara vs. Kenny Robertson
Russell Doane vs. Marcus Brimage