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Thales Leites under consideration for title shot vs. Anderson Silva

Thanks in large part to a five fight win streak in the UFC, Brazilian middleweight Thales Leites could be on the verge of being named the next man to challenge Anderson Silva for the UFC middleweight title.

UFC President Dana White revealed the news Tuesday afternoon during a public Q&A session at the Sports USA Bar located on the Fort Bragg military installation.

When asked by a fan in the audience what was next in store for Leites, White indicated that his next fight could come against Silva as early as February. UFC Vice President of Talent Relations Joe Silva was seated in the audience and conferred while adding that a Silva vs. Leites match has not been finalized and that Leites is instead at the top of a list that includes several candidates.

Leites has gone undefeated since losing his UFC debut to Martin Kampmann in November of 2006 during the live finale for the fourth season of “The Ultimate Fighter.” The Nova Uniao fighter is 14-1 overall in his pro MMA career with notable victories over Gustavo Machado, Jose “Pele” Landi-Jons, Pete Sell, and Nathan Marquardt.

The 27-year old’s most recent victory took place in October at UFC 90, where he submitted Drew McFedries with a rear naked choke at 1:18 of round 1.

Silva also competed on the same card, where he successfully defended his title against Patrick Cote after Cote’s knee buckled at 0:39 of round three, forcing referee Herb Dean to declare Silva winner via TKO due to injury. The win over Cote improved Silva’s lifetime record inside of the Octagon to 8-0 and his overall record to 23-4.

  • 27jride says:

    who the fuck would care to see that fight? Lietes is a nobody who’s going no where and hasn’t beaten ANY of the division’s top fighters. Drew McFedries (who would get destroyed) deserves a shot before him and right after Lietes is the guy at the walmart down the road that thinks he’s bad ass.

  • steve says:

    are you an idiot? first of all you say he hasnt beaten any of the division’s top fighters, meanwhile he beat Nate Marquardt back in June and how the hell does McFedries deserve a shot over him?

  • Scott says:

    Leites defeated Marquardt, but the only one who got “beat” was Leites. Nate was mopping the Octagon with Leites and dominating him in all aspects but made the mistake of getting caught for several infractions, and paid the price for it with the point deduction and the decision loss.

    Leites is not ready for a title shot. I think a rematch with Marquardt would be perfect, and one that Marquardt would win handily, as long as he keeps his head on straight. Demian Maia has also been calling out Leites lately, and that’s definitely another matchup that could happen if Marquardt ends up as a coach on TUF.

    Who else has Leites beat? Pete Sell, Floyd Sword, Ryan Jensen, and Drew McFedries…not a contender among the lot of them. I strongly disagree with Leites being given a title shot so soon.

  • lincoln says:

    Leites has a better shot than Marquardt does of beating Silva.Leites has a 5 fight winning streak in the UFC same as C

  • lincoln says:

    No wonder no one posts comments on this site anymore. Posts comments before i was even done typing! BULLSHIT!

  • Scott says:

    How does Leites have any shot at beating Silva? He couldn’t even keep Kampmann on the ground and Silva has far better takedown defense.

    Marquardt and Kampmann both picked Leites apart on the feet and Silva is far beyond either of those two in his striking.

    I think a properly motivated Marquardt in a rematch has a much better chance than Leites.

  • Grappo says:

    a prime example of why Silva should move up to LHW. I like Leites, but come on.

  • William W. says:

    So let me get this straight – they force Okami to fight Dean Lister in December rather than have him wait a month an a half to get a title shot he has already earned? And they give a title shot to Leites, who has 5 wins (4 really if you discount the Marquardt match) against less than stellar opponents? Wild.

  • ACK! says:

    No thanks. I’d much rather see Marquadt get another shot.

  • Cathedron says:

    Everyone important at MW has already been destroyed by Silva. Anyone they get to challenge him is undeserving. Silva needs to move to LHW. There’s no one left in his division that’s a real threat to Silva. Silva’s cleaned out that division… with bleach… You could eat off that division.

    Marquardt should have been DQ’d for that illegal knee. Leites was obviously rocked and didn’t look right for the rest of the fight, but he was too proud to quit. Sure, I think knees to the head of downed opponent should be legal, but they aren’t. Them’s the rules and I don’t think Marquardt would have had a chance against Leites without that early knee. Regardless, he deserved the loss.

  • Andrew says:

    I agree with cathedron no one is really going to beat silva eventually someone might get stupid lucky throwing hay makers to beat him but no one will legitamately beat him. He might as well move up and play with the big boys and cause some ruckus in the light heavies.

  • Drew says:

    I would rather see Maia, Okami, or Marquardt. I think I would even rather see Bisping get a title shot first some one who at least has a conceivable chance. I dont think Liees has faced nearly the competition to fight for the title. Throw him to Jason Mac and win another foght or two against someone please…… Floyd Sword… with all due respect….. pssshh.

  • Golion says:

    William W Spot on !

  • dpk says:

    If Okami win’s and doesn’t suffer any injuries against Lister, then this should be his shot even though it would be a quick turn around for him. Leites v Palhares /Bisping /Maia/ or the rematch with Nate would all be better fights for him at this point.

  • Ian says:

    I think we need to just skip the foreplay and give Maia a shot, since he’s the only one in that division that has a realistic shot at beating Silva.

  • CMT says:

    Andrew – Uhhhh Beavis! It is a legitimate win if you KO or TKO your opponet with hay makers. Liddel gets “stupid lucky” with his crazy over hand punchs. Sometimes swinging wildly is what is needed to beat someone like Silva. Silva will get caught….soon.

  • Chris says:

    Look, Okami was to get a shot, he got hurt, Cote stepped in, yeah I think they should scrap Okami and Dean and have Okami and Spider, but if Okami wins, he gets next. This will be a solid fight, he did beat Nate, but this event has to be a Spike event, its on London, with the UFC 93 in Dublin on PPV, this one in London and the main event isnt a huge mega fight, with Spiders last fight on PPV ending a way that people didnt like, he is out to prove himself, I think he comes out hard in this fight, dude does have good bjj, he could be a threat to Spider, but he should out strike him and TKO him. So with all that, I would expect to see UFC 95 in London to be the next Spike TV event. It has to be, what other fights are on that card? I thought maybe Huerta would fight on that card, fuck the march card, get Huerta and Fisher on this card, get someone like Cain on this card to fight another HW, get Diego vs Sherk maybe on this shit, put together a nice card and put it on Spike. But we’ll see. I think Spider wins this, but I’m not with everyone else thats like oh this will be so easy, this is a solid fighter he is facing. Okami def gets next shot if he beats Lister. If Okami wasnt fightin in a few weeks, if he was fightin in Jan on one of them cards, they might have gave him a title shot, but he already has been training for Lister, if he wins, figure he will get next title shot.

  • Chris says:

    I think Maia isnt ready yet, he is still a fight or two away. What they could do is have Okami and Maia fight next year for the next shot, eliminate one of them, figure Spider after this shit has to take a mega fight a LHW, or a fight with GSP sometime next year, he wants big fights, and if he really is only gonna fight 5 more times, I’m sorry, but Leites, Maia and Okami, they arent huge fights, all three will be good fights, but I think Chuck, Hendo again, GSP, a LHW title shot, these are the super fights people want to see.


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