The MMA community, as they so often do, came through with a potentially amazing silver lining to Vitor Belfort’s retirement fight being canceled this weekend.
Today saw the emergence of the unfortunate news that the middleweight matchup between Uriah Hall and Vitor Belfort is to be scrapped from this weekend’s UFC St. Louis following Hall’s inability to make it to the scales to weigh-in.
Of course, these things happen in this sport but with this pull-out the legendary Vitor Belfort has been deprived of his retirement fight. The Brazilian, after a recent run that has seen him get knocked out four times in his last six outings, intended on calling it a day after taking on the admittedly awful matchup that Hall presented him with.
And while many have lamented for ‘the Phenom’ having to regroup and reschedule his final appearance inside the octagon, many others pointed out that the unfortunate happening has now paved the way for an even better matchup.
Hall's unfortunate withdrawal surely paves the way for Bisping to rematch Belfort #UFCLondon. That's the fight to make.
— Chisanga Malata (@Chisanga_Malata) January 13, 2018
At this point, Michael Bisping vs. Vitor Belfort 2 is the fight to make. Both of them in a retirement fight, old grudge to settle. Makes too much sense. https://t.co/x7362uqdoe
— Damon Martin (@DamonMartin) January 13, 2018
Vitor Belfort vs Michael Bisping for a double retirement fight at UFC London is the move now IMO. It'd be beautiful.
— Justin Golightly (@SecretMovesMMA) January 13, 2018
Let’s get Bisping v Belfort in London then. Only silver lining here
— Luke Byron (@LukeByron) January 13, 2018
I want Michael Bisping vs. Vitor Belfort now. One last fight for both fighters. Perfect for UFC London. pic.twitter.com/B00SVzaJfc
— Christoffersen MMA News (@BestMMAnews) January 13, 2018
What a headliner that would be for the UFC’s next trip to London in March, eh? A pair of legends, a pair of retirements and a fight that would serve as a fitting sequel to an earlier rivalry, one that would be a perfect swansong for both men involved.
Belfort defeated Bisping during his incredible rise to the top of the middleweight division back in 2013, a run that saw him defeat and finish Luke Rockhold, Dan Henderson, and Bisping before failing a USADA test, something that sidelined him for about 18 months.
It would be a fight with history and one that both men would no doubt be eager to take on. For an athlete in Vitor’s position, only a select few opponents will prove suitable for such a monumental event and with Bisping also looking to close out his career, it would be the perfect fight for the fans to experience this coming March.
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Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena