Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Marquardt vs. Belfort Rumoured For UFC 109

After TKO'ing Rich Franklin inside a round at UFC 103, Vitor "The Phenom" Belfort (19-8) was scheduled, some say undeservedly, to meet Anderson Silva for the middleweight title at UFC 109. Luckily for idealists everywhere, a nagging elbow injury has sidelined "The Spider" and, according to CagePotato, it now appears likely that Belfort will face Nate "The Great" Marquardt (29-8-2[seen with his hommies above]) in a true number-one-contender match.

Marquardt, fresh off a pair of dominant 2009 victories over Wilson Gouveia and Demian Maia, was set to fight Chael Sonnen, but that fight was scrapped in favour of a showdown with Belfort. It's a bit of a shame for Sonnen, who looked amazing in his domination of Yushin Okami at UFC 104, but Nate is looking for his second shot at Anderson Silva's belt and, right now, that road goes through Belfort. Marquardt mounted very little offence in his first encounter with Silva back in July 2007, but Nate "The Great" appears to have matured and developed a great deal since then.

In other UFC 109 news, Josh Koschek (14-4) vs. Paulo Thiago (12-1) II has been tentatively scheduled. It's a rematch of one of the biggest upsets of 2009. In their first fight, Koscheck was winning handily before a sloppy-looking, though evidently powerful, left hook from Thiago landed flush on Koscheck's chin. The infamously yellow-fro'ed wrestler, who was getting a bit overconfident with his developing stand-up game, went down like he'd been shot, but claims it was an early stoppage. Following his co-main event appearance at UFC 106, in which he choked out Anthony "Rumble" Johnson, Koscheck claimed that he was deserving of his first welterweight title shot. Avenging his dramatic TKO loss to Thiago would go a long way toward realizing that ambition. After also securing a win, over Jacob Volkmann, on the main card of UFC 106, Paulo Thiago will be a much more marketable commodity for the Koscheck rematch.

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