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Nate Marquardt vs. Vitor Belfort on tap with Anderson Silva sidelined

nate marquardtWhile there were many that had been quite sceptical of the UFC’s decision to grant Vitor Belfort with a title shot at middleweight when he had never officially competed at the weight class for the promotion, it now appears as if “The Phenom” is going to have his opportunity to really earn his crack at the title as a match-up between himself and Nate Marquardt is apparently being put together according to a recent report over at Fighters Only Magazine.

It looks like current middleweight title holder Anderson Silva will not be able to compete in February as previously hoped due to the recovery process from a recent elbow surgery taking a little longer than anticipated. With Silva forced to the sidelines for an indefinite amount of time it couldn’t make any more sense than to give Marquardt and Belfort the opportunity to truly sort out who is deserving of The Spider’s next title defense.

Belfort would be bouncing back fresh off of the heels of his first round beatdown of former UFC middleweight champion Rich Franklin at UFC 103 while also currently riding a five fight win streak with knockout stoppages over the likes of Terry Martin and Matt Lindland along the way.

Marquardt is also riding a five fight win streak to some degree as his “defeat” suffered at the hands of Thales Leites was really a brutal beating over Brazilian that was reversed due to deduction of two points. Since his previous loss at the hands of Anderson Silva, Marquardt has put together impressive stoppage victories over the likes of Martin Kampmann, Wilson Gouveia, and most recently Demian Maia.

44 COMMENTS
  • benjammin says:

    great idea. belfort definately needs at least one more fight to prove himself. and even though marquardt already lost once i think this time around will be a better performance. (assuming he beats belfort) should be an exciting fight

  • benjammin says:

    anyone know if anderson silve is still planning on leaving the ufc after his contract is up? and when his contract is up?

  • Dufresne says:

    As much as I would like to see The Phenom go at The Spider, I think this match makes more sense overall. Vitor has never fought at middleweight before, and to allow him to just jump into a title shot was kinda bothering me.
    With the other primary contender in Henderson not signed with the UFC, it makes much more sense to me to make Vitor go through the remaining #1 contender Nate Marquardt first.

  • Dufresne says:

    benjammin: anyone know if anderson silve is still planning on leaving the ufc after his contract is up? and when his contract is up?

    If I remember right he has 3 more fights left on his current contract. As far as I know he still wants to box Roy Jones as well, but with this surgery I don’t know if he’s changed his mind or not.

  • Nick Havok says:

    Justice has been served!

    Instead of Vitor waltzing in and jumping to the head of the middleweight line with a flashy win over Franklin…he will now have to earn that title shot.

    Which he won’t…because Marquardt is going to manhandle him.

    Seriously, I know Belfort is good and everything, but unless he catches Nate with something powerful and on the button, I see Belfort getting brutalized in this fight. He just doesn’t have the grappling skills to hang…nor the brute strength.

    Marquardt is just on another level in my opinion…and after he defeats Vitor, there shouldn’t be anyone who questions his status as the true #1 contender to Anderson Silva’s title.

  • benjammin says:

    i agree. i know its all about making money to dana and fertitta bros but it bothers me when they bring in big names to almost immediate titles shots based solely on their popularity. you should still have to earn it at least a little. (example: brock lesnar)

  • benjammin says:

    Nick Havok: Justice has been served!Instead of Vitor waltzing in and jumping to the head of the middleweight line with a flashy win over Franklin…he will now have to earn that title shot.Which he won’t…because Marquardt is going to manhandle him.Seriously, I know Belfort is good and everything, but unless he catches Nate with something powerful and on the button, I see Belfort getting brutalized in this fight. He just doesn’t have the grappling skills to hang…nor the brute strength.Marquardt is just on another level in my opinion…and after he defeats Vitor, there shouldn’t be anyone who questions his status as the true #1 contender to Anderson Silva’s title.

    agreed. i think nate has come a long way since silva vs nate. win over maia wasnt very telling because it was so quick but at least we know hes got power in his hands! always fun to watch

  • fanoftna33 says:

    Both guys have great hands with the speed on Vitors side but Nate has by far the better grappling with his wrestling and Jiu Jitsu, although we will see how much Vitor has picked up training at Coutures gym, this is a about as even a fight as they come.

  • manny says:

    About time Joe silva sets up a good match up for the #1 contender. what the hell eas he thinking when he originally set up nate vs sonnen. WTF!!!
    Eitherway it should be a great war but the spider will beat them both.

  • xtreme_machine says:

    Finally

    Belfort is going to KO Nate

    And shut all you guys up about him not decerbing the title shot

    and maybe then you guys will start hugging Okami’s you know what again

    bring on the hate

  • matt says:

    Im going to first start off by saying great job Joe Silva and Dana White, this is a great match up. Nate has proven that he deserves another shot at Anderson. He has dominated since his first shot, and has shown great improvements in his game, looks to me that he has found that killer instinct that is needed to be successful in the octagon. Belfort has looked rejuvenated recently beating two of the most respected middleweight in the world in Lindland and Franklin. He made both of them look amateurish. This is a true number one contender match and I find it hard to pick a winner. Both are big middleweight with Knock Out power and both hold bjj black belts. The only advantage I see is Mardquart holding a wrestling advantage while Belfort holds a speed advantage. I predict Nate the Great winning by taking the fight to the ground and controlling Belfort for three rounds possibly finishing off a tired Belfort late in the Third round.

    I am also getting really sick of Anderson Silva. The guy is a great great fighter but he is a big baby. First when reports come out about his elbow surgery his manager denies the claims and says his figher is healthy and just taking a little time off. Then when the UFC books him to figth he suddenly had the elbow surgery and his Manager Soares goes on to talk about how Henderson first and then Belfort do not deserve title shots. Then Soares procedes to say that Anderson did infact have surgery on his elbow and is recovering fast and well. Then when he is rescheduled to fight against Belfort, Soares then states that his recovery is going slower than expected. I have been losing alot of respect for Anderson Silva in these past few months since his fight with Forrest Griffin. He is coming off as a pre madonna. He has all the skills in the world but a real fighter will fight anybody that is put in front of him anytime barring any serious injuries. A real fighter does not pick and choose his oppenents because he doesnt care who they are he just wants to fight. Also I do not think Anderson should have much say in who he fights until he starts becoming a draw. He has headlined numerous ppv’s and those shows have never done over 400,000 buys unless there is another huge ppv draw on the card such as Liddell for UFC 97 or Forrest Griffin and BJ Penn for UFC 101. I think Anderson Silva is a great fighter, the best in the world, but until he starts to become a big PPV draw I think he needs to stop whining and being a pre madonna and just fight whoever the UFC puts in front of him, The UFC knows what they are doing and they know how to build STARS.

  • Rich S. says:

    Dufresne: Vitor has never fought at middleweight before, and to allow him to just jump into a title shot was kinda bothering me.

    Vitor fought Franklin at 195 I believe, but his last 2 fights before that were at Middleweight..

    This is a very tough fight for Vitor..
    We all know his history with strong grapplers, and it’s not a very good one..
    But, at the same time, his last 3 fights are evidence that his hands are far FASTER and far STRONGER than ever before.. And I’m curious to see what he’s done with his grappling since the move to Xtreme Couture.. Does he have superb takedown defense? Has he tuned up his Jiu Jitsu and learned how to go for submissions under pressure? We’ll have to wait and see..

    Nate Marquardt is a Grade A grappler, but his hands are fast and heavy and he likes to strike.. That could very well be the deciding factor in this fight.. Marquardt NEEDS to come out and shoot in early.. If he wants to set up those takedowns, or avoid them altogether, he’s in some serious, serious trouble.

    It’s ALWAYS been hard for me to pick Vitor when he’s up against a world class grappler. And it’s even harder for me to pick Marquardt losing, because, after all, the only fight he’s lost in the UFC was to the greatest fighter alive (obviously, not couting Leites). But, I think Marquardt, despite being a smart fighter, is going to strike with Vitor, and for that reason will hand the vitory to him on a silver platter..

  • matt says:

    Alot of you are saying that when his current contract is up he is going to leave the UFC. The UFC has a champions clause in their contracts. This clause does not allow for a champion to leave the promotion unless they break the contract which will result in a legal battle ala randy couture in 2007. Silva may try to leave after his three fights are up but if he is still champion he has a contractual obligation to keep fighting for the UFC, and if he does not I guarntee the UFC will intefere with his possible boxing match with Roy Jones Jr.

  • FightFan313 says:

    Fluke win over Franklin or maybe even Wierd ??? Marquardt win over Belfort via anyway he wants.

  • Jstew3785 says:

    Belfort won his last 2 fights at MW by devastating KO. This should be an awesome fight. Props to the UFC for making this fight instead of waiting for Silva to get better.

  • FightFan313 says:

    Fluke win over Franklin or maybe even Wierd ??? .. watch the slow mow. Franklin never got hit ???. I know you don’t want to hear that but just watch the slow. The fight is online. Marquardt win over Belfort via anyway he wants.

  • Dufresne says:

    matt: Alot of you are saying that when his current contract is up he is going to leave the UFC. The UFC has a champions clause in their contracts. This clause does not allow for a champion to leave the promotion unless they break the contract which will result in a legal battle ala randy couture in 2007. Silva may try to leave after his three fights are up but if he is still champion he has a contractual obligation to keep fighting for the UFC, and if he does not I guarntee the UFC will intefere with his possible boxing match with Roy Jones Jr.

    True, but another plausible out for Silva is to forfeit his belt to move up a weight class to take one fight, which he might consider as long as it’s not against Machida. Also, there is plenty of precedence of champions retiring, they usually only end up in legal battles if they go on to compete in/sponsor/advertise for a competitor.

  • Angry Mike says:

    This is a GREAT turn of events. I thought this fight should happen before either got a shot at Silva, because Marquardt already lost once and Belfort is so new to UFC. Marquardt is big, strong and a helluva grappler, but the resurgent Belfort is a dynamite striker. His ko of Lindland was brutal. I’d like to see Belfort fight Henderson, too. He lost to Henderson in Pride, and it would be a great rematch for long-time fans.

  • Rockey 47 says:

    Would love to see silva GSP anyway before he retires. Belfort Marquardt should be good though, cant see either of them beating silva though.

  • Vogairian says:

    matt: He is coming off as a pre madonna. He has all the skills in the world but a real fighter will fight anybody that is put in front of him anytime barring any serious injuries. A real fighter does not pick and choose his oppenents because he doesnt care who they are he just wants to fight.

    Unless Fedor or GSP happens to be a poster here at 5oz, I don’t think many people should be calling out Anderson and telling him what a “real” fighter does.

  • matt says:

    Vogairian: Unless Fedor or GSP happens to be a poster here at 5oz, I don’t think many people should be calling out Anderson and telling him what a “real” fighter does.

    I am not saying he is not a great fighter as I reffered to him as the best in the world. All I am saying is that I do not like the way he handles the business side of the sport. He acts like a premadonna. He thinks he himself is bigger than the UFC it seems, as he believes he knows who deserves the title shots and who will draw the big ppv numbers. He should trust the UFC, his employer. The UFC has always put together good fights and they know how to market them to make their Champs as popular as possible. The UFC has put a huge media push behind Silva and he still cannot deliver as a PPV card headliner. You compared him to GSP, GSP does not pick and choose his oppenents he fights whoever the UFC puts in front of him. Why else would he want to fight Dan Hardy? Also, GSP puts butts in the seats at the arena and he has eyes glued to the telvision around the world as he always generates more than 500,000 ppv buys when he headlines a card.

  • nate says:

    am i the only person here who thinks this is an awesome matchup? and is also happy because there is no way both of these men wont be fighting silva for the belt? yes i want to see all three fights vitor vs nate. vitor vs silva. and nate vs silva. all would be great! neither one will beat anderson at this point in his career. but belfort vs marquardt is a toss up to me. whoever shows up the most prepared the least hurt and on their a-game wins this one. i expect nothingless than a FUCKIN’ FIGHT. both of these men have alot of pride and ego and fight with emotion which makes for an awesome matchup since they both carry lethal weapons attached to their wrists. i cant wait for this.

  • edub says:

    FightFan313: Fluke win over Franklin or maybe even Wierd ??? .. watch the slow mow. Franklin never got hit ???. I know you don’t want to hear that but just watch the slow. The fight is online. Marquardt win over Belfort via anyway he wants.

    Oh he hit him hard fight fan. The first was clean to the jaw, but the one that put him to sleep was straight to the back of the noggin. That line up from the spine that all the refs talk about…yea that shot was right in the middle. But it is what it is.

    I was very quick to put down Nate by whatever he wants, but something tells me Vitor is gonna clip him early. Ever since he has gone down to 185 his handspeed has looked disgusting. I gotta go with the upset here. Vitor by KO.

    …I can’t believe I just wrote that. Moose dont hate me.

  • nate says:

    edub knows whats up and not to sleep on vitor. what is scary is he has gotten faster more patient comes better trained and prepared than ever and still kept his power! im not counting out nate by any means but this is no walk in the park for either man.

  • benjammin says:

    Rockey 47: Would love to see silva GSP anyway before he retires. Belfort Marquardt should be good though, cant see either of them beating silva though.

    i really think nate has a pretty good shot at beating him this time around as long as he covers the angles. it he can get on top of him and work the ground and pound without being caught in a submission i think he can pull a decision. striking with him i think would be a bit more of a risk

  • Rich S. says:

    edub:
    Ever since he has gone down to 185 his handspeed has looked disgusting.

    He’s no Muhammad Ali, but he DID completely destroy Kampmann, Gouveia, AND Maia..
    With that said, his hand speed certainly doesn’t compare to Vitor’s.. And, that helped me make my pick.. I’m willing to guarantee that Nate will strike with Vitor for as long as he can.. And as soon as Vitor catches him, Nate’s shot will be weak, Vitor’s momentum will stop it, and the fight will end shortly thereafter.

  • FightFan313 says:

    Have you guys even looked at Vitors knock outs. He hasn’t EVER knocked out anyone of champion caliber. Silva back in 98 and Franklin, Franklin DID NOT GET HIT in that fight at the time he went down. This is going to be a extremely tough fight for Vitor. Vitor usually goes the distance with Champion caliber fighters in the past but Nate is a more complete kind of fighter that Tito, Randy, Chuck and Dan who all beat Vitor with Randy doing it twice in dominating fashion.

    This may be a new Vitor. This fight will tell me alot more as long a Nate doesn’t go down without being hit lol.

  • moosebaby02 says:

    Dub me and you can no longer be friends……alright fine you make some valid points but
    NATE THE GREAT!!! NATE THE GREAT!!!
    YES I have wanted this fight soooooooooo bad
    Rich
    Vitor fought Franklin at 195 I believe, but his last 2 fights before that were at Middleweight..
    Ya were they in the UFC??? I dont care if you fought at Middleweight in the depths of HELL vs Satin himself it dosent mean you just get a shot at the belt coming of a catch weight fight that meant nothing. If Dana doesnt recognize anything else that is not UFC then he should recognize anyone records out of the UFC. Plain and simple
    Dub still mad at you
    Dont sleep on Nates hand speed and power and of course Vitors looked fast against Franklin and Lindland cause they are the fastest fighters I have ever seen.
    That being said Vitor has just as a good chance to win this fight as NATE THE GREAT. It just comes down to what cancels out what
    Striking: i will give to Vitor but not buy much
    Grapping: Nate
    BJJ: Nate
    Wrestling: Nate
    Better Looking: Nate (im not gay that was a joke)
    But none of that will come into play unless both men come in to fight and they will. This is going to be a good fight and I cant wait to watch. I dont see an underdog in this one except that i will be pulling for Nate like always.
    I just hope he dosent get caught……what am i saying he is NATE THE GREAT
    Still mad at u dub
    Nate TKO in the 3rd

  • Swing Em says:

    I can’t pick a winner here…

    They’re both on fire right now & evenly matched across the board.

    I see this one ending early in the 2nd by KO/TKO, but I just can’t decide on who does the punching.

    That being said I think Vitor still poses the biggest threat to Anderson simply because of his hand speed. Anyone can “get caught” as they say & I think Vitor might be the one man alive quick enough to catch “The Spider”.

    Either way I’m ordering 109 just to see this fight

    Thank You Joe Silva!!!

  • Jak says:

    The problem with the “like/dislike” settings, is that if someone think that Vitor Belfort it gets blocked. That’s kind of lame.

    This seems basically like a Nate Marquardt appreciation thread.

    I think it will be a good fight, very close. It would just be nice to be able to read pro-Belfort comments without having to squint. :(

  • FightFan313 says:

    I agree Jak. To get blocked just because you don’t agree is not American speak your mind kind of living . If you don’t agree then make some valid points. Note the the Blocker. Its not right to block a post if the post is not vulger. Is it your intention just to have us be on the same page. What is your criteria for blocking a post. It can’t be as simple as other not agreeing by way of check mark?

    4 people to one don’t like what I typed up above but its the truth. Prove me wrong with a link. Show who Vitor has beaten that is a title holder. Change my mind. Rampage is the only fighter that he has beaten that is a top contender. Show me where Vitor hit Franklin.

    Moose is right.. to get a title shot when there is Henderson..who Vitor lost to and Nate Marquardt and then throw Thales in the mix. Its ubsurd.

    Those “fast hands” have only put average fighter to sleep. PROVE ME WRONG. I am game.

    Who is the 1 that liked what I typed. Please post why. Rich did not get hit in that fight untill he went to the ground. Did Franklin throw in the towel because Vitor had fast hands that didn’t connect? Plenty others have been hit by Vitor and didn’t go down. I have seen Rich hit by BOMBS and not go down. Both fights with Silva were Ephen Brutal and in took forever for Franklin to down. I don’t get what fast hand power you guys are talking about…so explain it to me.

  • bigbadjohn says:

    …the fast hand power is what knocked him out! I don’t care what you think you didn’t see in the video at slow mo, Franklin wouldnt just drop like that for fun. He got tagged and then blasted in the back of the head immediately with what looked like an illegal blow. Vitor Belfort’s punches are so quick, and thrown so fluidly I’m really surprised you can’t grasp that. He’s almost as dangerous as they come in the stand-up game. His losses are to the likes of Couture, Liddell, and decision losses to likes of Alastair, Tito and Hendo. He may not be a P4P stud but he’s not getting beat by chumps.

    And that being said, Marquardt is no chump, he is more dangerous every time he steps into the octagon and will be the victor.

  • bigbadjohn says:

    and I’d say being blocked is quite American. At least the process is democratic. Your opinions just don’t get the vote, ok McCain? LOL

  • moosebaby02 says:

    i know im going to get thumbs down but
    NATE THE GREAT!! NATE THE GREAT!!

  • Dufresne says:

    FightFan313: Rich did not get hit in that fight untill he went to the ground. Did Franklin throw in the towel because Vitor had fast hands that didn’t connect

    I’ve rewatched the fight a few times, and while I can see where you might have thought Franklin didn’t get hit, he did. It was a glancing left off of the temple, which I can tell you from personal experience hurts. It wasn’t enough to stop the fight, but it was enough to daze Franklin and knock him off balance so that Vitor could pounce on him and finish him off.

    After a lot of debate I’m going to go with Vitor on this fight. The last time we saw him fight a great striker (Silva) he did well until one short, quick punch landed on the button. I see something similar to that happening here, but as always, I’ve been wrong before.

  • Beau Fury says:

    Wasn’t Belfort calling out Mousasi to fight him a few months ago at 185??? and Mousasi said that if Belfort wanted to move up to 205 he would fight him and Belfort said that he would only fight Mousasi at their natural weight of 185??? But didn’t Belfort just fight at 195 cause he was having trouble cutting 185??? I think someone is afraid of Mausasi. What do you all think?

  • buryyourduke says:

    Nick Havok: “He just doesn’t have the grappling skills to hang…nor the brute strength.”

    Hey man, I agree that he didn’t deserve a title shot yet…but…you know he’s a Carlson Gracie black belt in BJJ right? The guy is pretty sick on the ground, as well as being very powerful.

  • edub says:

    buryyourduke: Hey man, I agree that he didn’t deserve a title shot yet…but…you know he’s a Carlson Gracie black belt in BJJ right?

    Yea i was thinking about this line too. The guy has competed in Abu Dhabi and has been a black belt for almost half of his life. I think a lot of people are severly underrating his grappling ability.

  • buryyourduke says:

    edub:
    Yea i was thinking about this line too. The guy has competed in Abu Dhabi and has been a black belt for almost half of his life. I think a lot of people are severly underrating his grappling ability.

    Yeah, he’s been a black belt for a long time. My instructor (also a Carlson Gracie black belt), says Vitor is a master. So, I would think he can hang with Nate on the ground.

  • FightFan313 says:

    Thanks Dufrense. You are right. The left was the only one and the temple can hurt. I know first fist as well and it can daze, but for Franlkin go down when he has taken a lot of punishment b4 going down… who knows, may be Franklin was so dazed and he didn’t want to go thru another possible beat down. But it looked more like a glanceing blow in slow mo to the upper part of the head.

    For those that neg me on the comments about Vitor and not doing well against champs or top caliber fighters or not knocking ANYONE out with those fast hands that is a champ or a top ranked fighter.. . Vitors record doesn’t lie.

  • Dufresne says:

    People tend to focus on what a fighter is most known for, even if they’re equally good, or better, at another discipline.
    Take Jose Aldo; he’s known for his destructive standup, but rumors from his gym are that he’s even better on the ground. Or look at Anderson Silva, he’s most known for standup as well, but he’s a legitimate black belt under the Nogueria brothers.
    It’s just one of those things where people remember what you did last the best.

  • JTfromCharlotte says:

    While I’m sure this will be an entertaining fight, I’ve gotta vent a little about it.

    Marquardt has now won 3 fights in a row [all via impressive stoppage] – and 5 if you count what should have been a victory over Leites… All at 185. Vitor Belfort has had 2 CAREER fights at 185 – and barely made 195 in this last fight. Neither of his 185 fights have been in UFC, and one of them was over a fighter who is 2-6 in his last 8 fights (Terry Martin). The fact that Vitor is in the MW title picture is insulting and it is truly disappointing to me that Joe Silva and Dana still don’t think that he is worthy of a rematch with Anderson. And by the way, when the rematch happens (fingers crossed that he gets past Vitor, which I think he will).. I see Nate taking it. I know it will seem far fetched to many of you – but I think the Nate Marquardt of 2009/2010 is one of the best in the world (definitely Top 10, almost certainly Top 5 in my opinion).

  • moosebaby02 says:

    and thats why you get a thumbs up from me JT

  • MMA-LOGIC says:

    I agree that a true Champ fights the best fighters and doesn’t say that he wont face someone especially when they are ranked no.2 in the world. If you are the best MW or p4p (f#ck I hate that p4p shit) then you man up and face whoever. Is that such a hard thing to accept. The same people that said Fedor was ducking guys for not joining the UFC are defending Silva for not wanting to fight guys inside the UFC. It is beyond me.

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