Although an exact date for the fight between TUF: Brazil 3 coaches Wanderlei Silva and Chael Sonnen hasn’t been set into stone yet, the weight class at which they will compete at has.
At the UFC Fight Night 33 pre-fight show on Friday, Sonnen announced that he and Wanderlei Silva will be facing off at light heavyweight.
The two have been bitter rivals for quite some time now. They’re rivalry reached a boiling point at the Mr. Olympia event in Las Vegas this September when Silva confronted “The American Gangster” in person. The confrontation resulted in both fighters having to be separated by security guards and the whole thing was actually really embarrassing. But nonetheless, Silva posted a message online afterwards threatening Sonnen and calling him a coward.
“You are fearful. You are afraid of me. And I will beat you up. I wanted to beat you up today. But I’m a professional, and I don’t fight in the street. Real men talk face to face. With me the talk is straight up. I will punch your face. It will happen soon. … The beating I will give you will be my gift to the people.”
Sonnen most recently lost to his friend Rashad Evans in a first round TKO stoppage at UFC 167. Sonnen looked like he was easily overpowered by the larger Evans, and after the bout, he expressed his interest in returning to the middleweight division. Prior to that loss, Sonnen defeated Silva’s former teammate, Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, with an impressive first round submission.
Silva’s last fight was in March against Brian Stann, where the Brazilian legend outstruck his opponent to a second round knockout victory. Nearly a year before that, he was soundly defeated for a second time by former UFC Middleweight Champ Rich Franklin.
The highly anticipated matchup between Sonnen and Silva is expected to take place sometime in 2014.