Vitor Belfort has touted his fight with Jon Jones at UFC 152 as the old lion against the new lion. Belfort has fought in the UFC on three different occasions his first coming way back in 1997. He was 19 years old when he won the UFC Heavyweight tournament and since has had all of the hype surrounding him.
He may have never lived up to that hype, but with a win at UFC 152 all of that hype can finally be viewed as real.
Belfort has had his struggles, there is no doubt about that, he has had a very prolific career, however. He has held the light heavyweight title and has fought in every weight class from middleweight to heavyweight. We may not see the 19 year old kid that was over powering opponents with his speed and power, but what we do see is a smarter fighter.
He has learned a lot in his time in the octagon. Belfort has suffered the highs and lows that every fighter has to face and was truly Jon Jones before there was Jon Jones. Many analysts thought Belfort was the fighter that could give Anderson Silva trouble, but he made a crucial mistake, one that won’t be made in his fight with Jones.
When he fought Silva he waited and let Silva find his range which ultimately ended in a brutal front kick finish for Silva. Belfort won’t make that same mistake as he did against Silva.
Expect Belfort to pressure Jones and use his speed to negate the reach of Jones. Belfort is one of the strongest fighters in the UFC and if he can muscle Jones and turn it into a brawl this fight becomes a very intriguing matchup.
Belfort was “The Phenom.” He has defeated the who’s who of MMA, but ultimately has failed to live up to the hype that surrounded him when he was a prospect coming up through the ranks. This fight isn’t for money for Belfort, but rather legacy. One fight on UFC 152 can make up for all the mistakes and trials he has suffered in his career. He may never reach the level we thought he would reach when he was 19 years old, but a victory against Jones at UFC 152 will help heal a lot of those wounds.