For a major fight like this, one would expect to see Herb Dean or even “Big” John McCarthy as the third man inside the cage, but one former title challenger has thrown his name into the hat as a possible referee: Chael Sonnen.
Before Sonnen took on Silva for the first time in August 2010, he had become a fan favorite to some with his wild antics and one of the most hated men in mixed martial arts to the Silva fans. He bad mouthed the then-champion about essentially everything there was and the buildup to their rematch was more of the same. The thing about his bad mouthing was it didn’t do anything positive for him and Silva still walked away from the Octagon with the world title.
As Sonnen has seemed to mature a bit due to his stint as an analyst for the UFC, he has slowly been winning over more fans again. When he spoke with Ariel Helwani about his plans to apply to be the official for Weidman vs. Silva 2, it has made some wonder whether he is good or bad for the sport. He has a crucial fight with the legendary Mauricio “Shogun” Rua in just a few days and the fact that he is wasting his time talking about Silva again could affect his ability to beat Rua and stay a legitimate factor in the MMA world.
The thing I am curious about should Sonnen get the call to officiate the title fight is what is the Nevada State Athletic Commission going to do if Sonnen and Weidman go WWE on Silva and make this a handicap match?