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Fabricio Werdum Next in Line for Heavyweight Title; UFC Plans 13 Events in Brazil for 2014

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Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Fabricio Werdum, the first man to finish the great Fedor Emelianenko, will soon get a shot at the UFC heavyweight championship.

“Love Werdum,” said UFC President Dana White during a media scrum Sunday in Brazil. “We just did a deal with him. I see a lot of good things happening for that guy in the future.”

Werdum is coming off a spectacular  submission victory over  Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira in June. He has won six of his last seven fights, with the only loss coming to Alistair Overeem by decision, at a time when Overeem was a top heavyweight in Strikeforce.

Werdum battled Junior Dos Santos in the UFC in 2008, but was KO’d in the first round. He may get a rematch against JDS, if dos Santos can beat UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez at UFC 166.

Werdum, who holds victories over Emelianenko, Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva and Roy Nelson, will fight for the gold, White said.

“Werdum is coming,” White said.  “That guy is on his way to a title shot.”

Werdum was one of the many things about Brazil praised by White. He said the UFC plans to hold 13 events in the country next year.

“This might be the most important market in the world,” White said. “It’s on fire. It’s taking off. Brazil is on fire and not only is it that we are going to do 13 events next year and the market is booming, the best talent in the world is coming out of here. The great thing about us doing more fights here next year is more opportunity for Brazilians who will break through in the global market, not just the Brazilian market.”

The media tour in Brazil comes as the UFC and Bellator wage war internationally and domestically. Bellator just announced a contract with Fox Sports in Brazil to televise its shows. The deal stunned the MMA community largely because UFC has the contract with Fox Sports in the U.S.