Silva’s Coach Would Welcome Sonnen-Belfort Matchup

By Marcelo Alonso Oct 26, 2011
Josuel Distak (center) wants to see Vitor Belfort matched up with Chael Sonnen. | Photo: M. Alonso

Chael Sonnen wants a rematch with Anderson Silva, but the UFC middleweight champion and those around him, at least publicly, seems hesitant to oblige. If it falls through, former light heavyweight titleholder Vitor Belfort has stated a willingness to face Sonnen, especially in light of the Team Quest standout’s history of derogatory comments towards Brazilian fighters.

Belfort’s former coach, Josuel Distak, who now trains Silva at the X-Gym in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, would like to see the matchup.

“It would be interesting. Their games don’t match, and Vitor has more ways to win,” Distak told “Sonnen does not have the game to beat either Vitor or Anderson. He’s been submitted by three Brazilians: Paulo Filho caught him in an armbar, Demian Maia with a triangle choke and Anderson was the latest. Now, it’s Vitor’s time to knock out or submit Sonnen.”

Distak scoffed at those who claim Silva is dodging Sonnen and admits a second fight between the two seems inevitable. The 36-year-old champion has won a record 14 consecutive fights inside the Octagon, including his second-round technical knockout against Yushin Okami at UFC 134 in August. Silva submitted Sonnen with a fifth-round triangle armbar at UFC 117 in 2010 after the American had controlled much of the first four frames with his wrestling and top control.

“It’s absurd to say Anderson is running away, especially after he submitted Sonnen with a broken rib,” Distak said. “We haven’t been notified of any fight, but Brazil and the world wishes to see it. If this fight ends up happening, he will hurt Sonnen so badly. It’s up to [UFC President] Dana White to decide the date. If he announces it, Anderson will be there to fight.”


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