UFC middleweight contender Vitor Belfort has been hearing his name coming out of the mouths of potential opponents over the past few weeks and he doesn’t seem to appreciate the free publicity. During a video interview that you can find on Sherdog.com, Belfort addressed former DREAM and Strikeforce champion Gegard Mousasi, who has been calling out the former UFC tournament champion.
It didn’t take long for those who saw the interview to realize Belfort was unhappy with the proposal from Mousasi, who the mixed martial arts veteran doesn’t feel deserves to step in the cage with him.
“If you want to fight Vitor Belfort, you have to earn it,” said Belfort. “It’s just like if you want to play someone in the quarter or semi finals – you cannot just because you won something a long time ago. No, you have to earn your spot.
“I don’t like it how people are using Twitter trying [to get opponents]. I want to fight for the belt — that’s my goal. That’s the goal of a fighter, that’s the goal of an athlete in the UFC. That’s the goal of Vitor Belfort – I’m a winner, I’m a champion. That’s what I want, that’s what I’m fighting for. I’ve been proving, I’ve been earning, so the only thing I see next for me is fights that will bring me up.”
While Belfort was dismissive of Mousasi’s challenge, he offered some friendly advice.
“This is division [is full] of great athletes. If Mousasi wants to fight someone, go fight Luke Rockhold, go fight Michael Bisping,” Belfort said. “He has to prove himself, that’s how it is in this sport, you have to earn it. If you want something, earn it, and I did.”
Belfort vs. Mousasi would be one heck of a treat to the mixed martial arts fans, but it is clear that Belfort currently has no interest in that match up.
It makes sense for Belfort, who has much more to lose, but if both fighters continue their current trend it will only be a matter of time before they meet in the center of the octagon.