Vitor Belfort’s ailing shoulder is healing quite nicely, and his manager is confident that Belfort will be able to return to the Octagon by November.
Speaking to MMA Junkie, Fabiano Farah said that Belfort will not have to take on a warm-up fight before fighting for the title. That’s despite Belfort not actually having a fight at middleweight since returning to the UFC last year.
“Vitor will be in (the best) absolute physical condition to return to the octagon and fight for the UFC title by November 2010,” Farah told Junkie’s Steven Marrocco via email.
Belfort knocked out former middleweight champion Rich Franklin in the first round of their September bout, and UFC President Dana White said immediately after the bout that Belfort would receive the next shot at Anderson Silva. The two Brazilians were scheduled to face each other at UFC 112 in April, but Belfort withdrew from the bout due to a shoulder injury so severe that it ultimately required surgery. Silva instead faced Demian Maia in a title defense that drew the ire of fans, fighters and even Dana White.
Silva is scheduled to face Chael Sonnen at UFC 117 in August. The bouts with Sonnen and Belfort will likely be Silva’s last in the middleweight division, as White plans to move him to light heavyweight on a permanent basis if he beats both fighters.