UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva has stated that he would like to take his next fight in late 2013. This surely will put any prospect of a fight between Silva and Georges St. Pierre on hold, but it also affects the middleweight division.
Michael Bisping feels that if Silva does take a year off, the fight between him and Vitor Belfort Jan. 12 should be for the interim title.
While Bisping would be deserving of a title shot with a victory, I don’t believe that fight can be a interim title bout.
Belfort is coming off a loss to Jon Jones and his previous opponent was the now former UFC fighter, Anthony Johnson. Those fights don’t scream title contender.
There is also another middleweight fighter with a more deserving contender set to fight at UFC 155. Chris Weidman is coming off a huge win against Mark Munoz and will take on Tim Boetsch in his next fight. If Weidman defeats Boetsch, it could should set up a bout between Bisping and Weidman.
The timing makes sense too. Assuming both fighters come out of their bouts healthy , a fight for the chance to face Silva could take place around May or June and set up a fight with the champion for late 2013 when Silva wants to return.
This would continue to advance the middleweight contenders along with not needing to do a interim title bout between the too. The UFC could still use that as a interim title fight, however, if it feels it needs to go that route.