The mixed martial arts match between Vitor Belfort and Chael Sonnen at UFC 175 was scrapped after the latter failed a random drug test. Five years later, Bellator President Scott Coker says he wants to finally make it happen.
Speaking on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show, the Bellator executive revealed that the next opponent he has in mind for Belfort is Sonnen. Their supposed UFC showdown in 2014 turned into mist after the American fighter tested positive on two illegal substances prior to the event.
Vitor Belfort is coming off a second-round knockout loss to Lyoto Machida in the battle of Brazilian legends last May. ‘The Dragon” landed a front kick cleanly to ‘The Phenom’s’ face that sent him crashing to the canvas at UFC 224.
Chael, on the other hand, has suffered a more recent defeat to Fedor Emelianenko in the semi-finals of Bellator’s heavyweight Grand Prix tournament. The referee stopped the match in the dying seconds of round one after the Russian fighter crushed his foe with finishing hammerfists.
Coker now sees the Belfort vs Sonnen rivalry a great showdown between two heavyweight legends in the sport. Breaking the news on Twitter, sports journalist Chamatkar Sandhu quoted the Bellator chief on his interview with ESPN’s Ariel Helwani.
Scott Coker to @arielhelwani: “If we were to do anything with Vitor (Belfort), then Chael (Sonnen) would make sense.”
— Chamatkar Sandhu (@SandhuMMA) February 18, 2019
Taking a trip down memory lane, Belfort and Sonnen’s supposed Octagon meet in July 2014 was cancelled due to the American fighter’s failed drug test. Sonnen tested positive on anastrozole and clomiphene, the substances he explained were on his system due to a change in UFC’s ruling.
“[The Nevada State Athletic Commission] changed the ruling in Nevada earlier this year, doing away with the [testosterone replacement therapy], and I was on that. So when they changed the rule, we all had to go through a transition phase. For me during the transition, I had to take a couple of things,” Sonnen stated.
“One is called Clomiphene… and another is called HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin). I didn’t fight it or ask for a license. In the interim, they did a test, and I tested positive for these things which I should have because I took them and they were in my system.”
USADA conducts random drug testing on fighters who do not have upcoming bouts and the results of Sonnen’s assessment came out as his match against Belfort was approaching.
“That wasn’t a surprise. These aren’t anabolics, these aren’t steroids or performance enhancers, but they have deemed that they are banned substances. What’s interesting in my case is that we’re out of the competition. These aren’t things that I showed up with on game day. This is out of competition due to a rule that they changed, so it’s an odd spot for me.”
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Featured Image Credit: Instagram/Chael Sonnen and Instagram/Vitor Belfort