UFC middleweight fighter Vitor “The Phenom” Belfort has discontinued his working relationship with MMA coach Shawn Tompkins, according to Tompkins himself, who revealed the news during a recent appearance on The Fight Show with host Mauro Ranallo.
Belfort and Tompkins began working together prior to Belfort’s 2008 Affliction bout against Terry Martin; “The Phenom” began training at the Xtreme Couture gym in Las Vegas while Tompkins was still on the staff, and then followed Tompkins when he left the gym in 2009. While speaking with Ranallo, Tompkins alluded to Belfort’s at-times doubted mental fortitude and also discussed “The Phenom’s” relationship with Mike Tyson.
“Well, you know, Vitor’s done this before. Vitor sometimes, he gets a little clouded in his head,” said Tompkins. “It’s not that he brought in Mike Tyson or anything like that. Vitor just wanders, you know, and he goes where what’s happening, what’s famous, what’s popular and he’ll go over there. Mike Tyson isn’t teaching him anything. Neither is the other eight gyms that he’s training at. Just because he’s over at Couture’s and not with me doesn’t mean he’s with Couture. Vitor isn’t loyal to anybody. We’ve seen it before.”
The gym switch comes shortly before Belfort will challenge UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva for his title and, despite the fact that he obviously feels slighted, Tompkins gave both Belfort and Silva his best wishes.
“I hope for the best for him, but you know, for a guy who told me about respect, loyalty, and God and all this stuff for so many years, he sure did prove the opposite,” he said. “So, we’ll see. Best of luck to him. Best of luck to Anderson, as well.”
Reportedly training back at Xtreme Couture, Belfort will attempt to wrest from Silva his belt this February 5th in the main event of UFC 126, which will go down at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.