UFC middleweight fighter Vitor “The Phenom” Belfort is apparently pretty caught up in the boxing vs. MMA story line as he recently issued a plea to UFC President Dana White through his Twitter account to allow him to fight champion boxer/MMA novice James “Lights Out” Toney in a match under boxing rules in the Octagon.
Toney, over several months of intense personal hyping and trash talk, hounded White into allowing him to compete in the UFC against one of the sport’s biggest stars in Randy “The Natural” Couture. Couture and Toney squared off August 28th at UFC 118 and “Lights Out” was absolutely trounced en route to earning the easiest paycheck of his career. Despite Couture’s complete dominance seeming to prove that Toney knows next to nothing about MMA, the heavyweight champion boxer is still looking to compete in MMA after his upcoming IBA heavyweight title defense. Should Dana White relent on his promise to keep Toney out of the Octagon, he has a fighter on his roster who is willing to oblige Toney’s challenge for an MMA fighter to meet him under boxing rules.
“Dana let me fight James Toney on 6 round box[ing] match I think I can catch him with my speed,” Brazilian fighter Vitor “The Phenom” Belfort recently posted on his Twitter account.
Belfort also asked for the match to happen under the UFC banner and stated that he intends to prove the overall superiority of MMA fighters to boxers.
“Dana [it] will be the 1 boxing match in UFC I promise he will fell my power and we will show the world [that] a UFC fighter can do better,” wrote “The Phenom.”
Belfort is currently scheduled to take on fellow contender Yushin Okami to determine the next challenger to the middleweight belt (after Anderson Silva and Chael Sonnen rematch, of course) and Toney is likely to be defending his International Boxing Association heavyweight title sometime this year, making it unlikely for the two to square off anytime soon. Also making this fight unlikely is Dana White’s probable desire to restrict Toney of bragging rights and keep intact the status and reputation of one of the UFC’s bigger names in Vitor Belfort. Not to mention that seeing James Toney in the Octagon is likely as far out as the UFC will go, letting him fight a potential future champion in the Octagon under boxing rules just won’t happen.