According to Vitor Belfort, his middleweight title challenge against current champion Chris Weidman will now take place on February 28th in Los Angeles.
“On Feb. 28, I will be stepping inside the cage and winning this belt.” Belfort told the Brazilian media on Friday. “It’s going to be good, right after Carnival.
“Los Angeles is a great place, the first place I lived when I moved to the United States,” he added. “It was the right place. I’m really happy with this news.”
Belfort earned his shot at the title with a three-fight winning streak against three big names in Michael Bisping, Luke Rockhold and most recently Dan Henderson – with all finished by highlight reel head kicks.
That set up an eagerly anticipated showdown between Belfort and Weidman back in May, but it was then canceled after Belfort withdrew from the fight after Testosterone Replacement Therapy was banned by NSAC, though it also later emerged that he had tested over the limit for testosterone during a random drugs test in February.
The fight would eventually be rescheduled to take place in December as the main event of UFC 181, but Weidman suffered a broken hand which led to Johny Hendricks Vs Robbie Lawler II being installed as the headliner instead.
So, by the time the fight comes around it’ll have been well over a year since Belfort last fought in the Octagon, while Weidman has defended his title just once this year – earning a unanimous decision victory over Lyoto Machida back in July.
That took Weidman’s unbeaten professional record to 12-0, including two victories over long time champ Anderson Silva, leaving him ranked No.4 on the overall UFC pound for pound list.
While it’s not been officially confirmed yet the fight should be the main event for the UFC 184 event on February 28th. Interestingly, it had been rumored that a UK event would also take place on that date, though it remains to be seen if that will actually come to fruition.