Paulo Filho submits Chael Sonnen with an armbar at WEC 31: Faber vs Curran. Photo property of World Extreme Cagefighting.
The long-awaited rematch between reigning WEC middleweight champion Paulo Filho and the division’s top challenger, Team Quest product and former standout college wrestler Chael Sonnen, will reportedly take place at a yet-to-be-announced World Extreme Cagefighting event in September.
The news comes from a report by Sherdog.com.
The two were slated to rematch at a WEC event in March but the fight was postponed after Filho had opted to withdraw from the fight after checking himself into a local rehabilitation center in order to receive help for an alleged substance abuse problem. Sonnen went on to defeated Bryan Baker at the event via unanimous decision.
Filho has not fought since submitting Sonnen in controversial fashion last December. With Sonnen trapped in an armbar and his face grimacing in pain, referee Josh Rosenthal stepped in and stopped the bout, claiming that Sonnen had verbally submitted. Sonnen has since kept his stance that he did not tell Rosenthal to stop the bout.
According to Sonnen, Filho seems to be taking the fight personally, using Sonnen’s past remarks about his opponent’s character as motivation towards delivering a legitimate ending to the long-standing rivalry between the two.
“I wasn’t trying to be a heel with Paulo before the first fight, he’s just a dirtbag in real life,” Sonnen said in the report. “The only reason I fought him is because no one else would. There is this idea of being respectful to other fighters. That’s the new word. But this isn’t Britney Spears insulting Christina Aguilera from halfway across the country through the media. I’m going to get in a cage and fight about it, so if he thinks I’m using fighting words, it’s because I’m planning to fight him.”