Vitor Belfort ended Michael Bisping’s title hopes, as he knocked out his fellow middleweight in the second round of their main event fight with a head-kick and follow-up punches Saturday night in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Bisping had been promised a title shot against Anderson Silva if he beat Belfort. The brash Brit was humble in defeat, despite the opportunity he lost.
“Congratulations to Vitor,” Bisping said after the fight. “I had an amazing training camp. I felt fantastic. It was a beautiful kick. He caught me, and he was a better man than me tonight.”
After his win, Belfort went on to call out Chael Sonnen and asked the UFC brass for a rematch against light-heavyweight champion Jon Jones — whom he lost to at UFC 152 in Toronto this past September.
“Tell that punk Chael Sonnen, get out,” Belfort said. “Dana (White) and Lorenzo (Fertitta), take him out. I want to fight Jon Jones. I need that rematch. Take that clown away. Go home.”
Jones and Sonnen are currently slated to fight one another at UFC 159 in April following their coaching stints on The Ultimate Fighter 17, which debuts on Jan. 22.
In the co-main event C.B. Dollaway and Daniel Sarafian competed in a Fight of the Night-winning bout. Dolloway picked up a split decision win over the young Brazilian.
Also on the main card, Gabriel Gonzaga submitted Ben Rothwell with an arm-in guillotine choke in the second round of their heavyweight matchup.
Plus, Khabib Nurmagomedov improved to 19-0 as a professional and 3-0 in the UFC with a brutal TKO win over Thiago Tavares. Nurmagomedov landed a left hand that dropped Tavares and then followed up with a myriad of vicious elbows before the referee stepped in.
The preliminary card consisted of some good finishes and some controversy as well. Yuri Alcantara stopped Pedro Nobre but it was ruled a no-contest due to accidental punches to the back of the head in the first round. Alcantara was later paid his win bonus by the UFC because on review it appeared no illegal strikes actually landed.