Sherdog.com is reporting that Chael Sonnen has signed his contract to face UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva at UFC 117, expected to take place at the Oracle Arena in Oakland, CA on August 7.
“I signed my contract and sent it in six minutes after it hit my fax machine. He’s been hanging on to (his contract) for 10 days and hasn’t signed it yet,” said Sonnen. “I’ll be fighting August 7 against somebody. I’m presuming it’s him, but again, he’s had it for 10 days. I don’t know if fax machines aren’t working in Brazil or what the holdup is.”
Silva’s manager, Ed Soares, confirmed to the website that they received the contract last Thursday and that Silva would sign it when he returned from a vacation with his family.
“It’s on,” Soares said of the bout. “There’s no doubt about it.”
UFC president Dana White had announced the bout last week on ESPN’s Jim Rome is Burning, and said that Sonnen would bring the fight to Silva – something his recent challengers haven’t done.
“Chael Sonnen is one of these guys that’s not going to lay back, not gonna do what these other guys [have done],” White told host Jim Rome. “When he’s been in these positions – when these types of fights have happened – it’s been against real good jiu jitsu guys. Guys that want to get the fight to the ground.
“Well, Chael Sonnen is gonna want to take this fight to the ground, but he’s gonna double-leg him and bring him down.”
Sonnen leapfrogged into the top contender spot after dominating Nate Marquardt at UFC 109 in February. Although his lopsided unanimous decision cemented his spot for the next shot at the belt, Sonnen suffered a severe cut on his forehead that forced him on the IR – otherwise it would have been him, and not Demian Maia in Abu Dhabi at UFC 112.
Thanks to Tim Ngo for contributing to this story.