In the wake of Vitor Belfort calling out Chael Sonnen and declaring that he deserves another shot at light heavyweight champion Jon Jones, let’s take a look back at some of the worst decisions fighters have made.
It’s great to call people out and at times it’s needed to make a fight happen, but be careful with the words used as they can come back and make one look foolish. If a fighter is going to come out and continue to talk about someone, then make sure there is room to back it up by at least putting on a solid performance.
Vitor Belfort Calls Out Chael Sonnen after UFC on FX win
After Vitor Belfort defeated Michael Bisping, he called Chael Sonnen a clown and informed the UFC’s honchoes that he deserved a rematch with Jon Jones. Maybe Belfort took a bad shot to the head and wasn’t thinking when he challenged Jones.
In their only meeting last year, Belfort was able to lock Jones in an armbar submission early in the fight and for a few seconds looked like he might be the first person to beat one of the best in the world. It would have been an upset, but Jones escaped and went on to destroy Belfort until he made him tap in the fourth round.
I’m not taking anything away from Belfort, but he doesn’t deserve a rematch with Jones. He had offense for just a few seconds and now thinks he deserves another title shot. He doesn’t as it belongs to someone who hasn’t tested Jones yet.
As for calling out Sonnen, Belfort was just using his words to try and get another chance at the gold. He took a page out of the Sonnen and Diaz brothers’ playbook. Belfort vs. Sonnen makes sense. If Sonnen losses to Jones then those two meeting would be worth seeing.
Randy Couture vs. James Toney for UFC 118
Boxers have proclaimed that they can adapt successfully into MMA. The ever outspoken James Toney talked for months about how he could defeat any MMA fighter if he trained enough. After constant verbal jabs, the UFC gave in and offered him UFC hall of famer Randy Couture.
While Couture had created his own legacy in MMA, Toney had done the same in boxing. Add in how both fighters were passed their prime and the fight seemed somewhat balanced.
Quickly into the fight, Couture put Toney on his back and the rest was history. The loudmouth boxing star was unable to mount any offense from the ground and was quickly submitted. That was Couture’s final win and the last of having to see Toney inside the Octagon.
Anderson Silva vs. Chael Sonnen rematch for UFC 148
Granted the first Anderson Silva vs. Chael Sonnen fight was a sight to see. The unstoppable middleweight champion was worked over for the better part of five rounds before he locked in a submission victory with minutes to go in the fight.
A rematch between the two seemed almost a lock. Then Sonnen tested positive for elevated testosterone levels and ran into trouble with the law for money laundering. It would be almost two years until Sonnen to get his rematch.
For those two years, especially the final weeks leading up to the meeting, Sonnen continued to taunt Silva. While taunting is fine, Sonnen took it to another level when he brought Silva’s home country and family into his comments.
Silva made him pay for his words in the second round after Sonnen missed with a spinning fist and fell against the cage. A knee the chest and a flurry of punches to follow was all that was needed. All the trash talk from Sonnen meant nothing in their rematch, as Silva proved why he is the pound-for-pound best fighter in the world.
All of the Ken Shamrock vs. Tito Ortiz fights
It was a changing of the guard. For years, before there was such a company known as the UFC, Ken Shamrock had dominated the MMA world. In stepped Tito Ortiz, who within two years would defeat Shamrock’s brother for the UFC light heavyweight championship.
Shamrock looked at Ortiz and saw someone who disrespected the sport with his middle finger gestures. Ortiz saw Shamrock as an old man, years past his prime. Their three encounters weren’t much, with Ortiz winning all of them. Two fights Ortiz finished in the first round.
These were two fighters who truly hated the other. They could be considered the first real heated feud between any UFC fighters. This was a case of Shamrock attempting to outtalk Ortiz, something that he wasn’t great at as he stumbled over his words.
Maybe Shamrock should have just kept his mouth shut as going 0-3 with Ortiz ranks up there as moments that fans remember him for and not the dominant fighter he was early in his career.