“When we did the press conference down in Brazil, Silva hadn’t even agreed to fight him,” White said. “That fight wasn’t happening. I had them bring Anderson to the place where the press conference was, and we sat in a room for three hours fighting about the fight.”
Fans may remember the April 24 news conference in Rio de Janeiro for its late start. And White said that late start was because he and his biggest star were at odds over Silva signing on for the rematch.
Silva, as should come as little surprise, is not a fan of the brashness and trash talk that led up to UFC 117, and the talk that Sonnen has continued for nearly two years since then. But when Sonnen got on the plane with White, he flew to Brazil with no guarantee of a fight – only the hope that White could get Silva to agree to the rematch.
“Yeah, (Chael knew),” White said. “He knew there was no fight. (What Chael said) was true, absolutely true. We went down there to make that fight. We set up a press conference, and I had to get it done.”
As interesting as that story is and was, I'd be even more intrigued to find out what the UFC's plans were for the press conference had Anderson not agreed to the bout. Would they have allowed Sonnen to call him out again in his home country? Or would Dana and Chael have just held a "state of the UFC" address?
“We’ve got two fights left, we’ve got the (Shinya) Aoki fight then we’ve got one more after that,” Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney told MMAWeekly Radio about Eddie Alvarez’s contract. “The guy has been just unbelievably good and positive for this organization. He’s been good and positive for Bellator, he’s also been good and positive for the entirety of MMA. Much like our situation with Hector Lombard, right now Hector’s a little bit further along cause I signed him earlier than I signed Ed, but you remember Hector and Ed were signed in 08′.
“I had a sit down with Hector Lombard, this was about 8 months ago, and we’re coming up on the end of our deal, but it’s getting closer and he asked me what’s going to happen. I said I don’t know what’s going to happen, but I can tell you that 2012 is going to be an awesome, epic year for Hector Lombard. And whether it’s an awesome, epic year in the Octagon, or whether it’s an awesome, epic year at Bellator, I’m not sure. I can’t tell you how that’s all going to play out, but I can tell you it’s going to be a great year for you, you’re going to make a lot more money,” Rebney said.
According to Rebney, neither Alvarez nor Lombard have any kind of champions clause in their contracts. Once they are up, both are free to walk, and with the UFC openly interested in their services, it's going to have to take an offer that can't be refused in order for Bellator to keep either of them.
“Because Tim Boetsch is coming off a great win over Yushin Okami, it just made more sense and was the more appealing matchup,” Bisping today told MMAjunkie.com Radio. “It’s also a tougher matchup for me, but I want to win that next fight and stake a claim to that title shot. I think beating Tim Boetsch rather than Cung Le gives me more grounds to do that.”
“He’s looked great, and he’s had some good wins,” Bisping said. “As I said, he had a huge KO of Okami, who was recently the No. 1 contender. I think that puts him pretty high up there in the rankings, and those are the guys I want to fight.”