Alan Belcher (18-6) is finally starting to put everything together. He has won four straight fights, and it could be seven, if not for a controversial decision against Yoshihiro Akiyama. Belcher suffered an eye injury in the middle of his four fight win streak, but has looked even more impressive since returning. He is starting to show that he has all the talent in the world to challenge for a belt and was even so daring as to go heel hook for heel hook with Rousimar Palhares in his last bout.
Belcher is a much different fighter than he was in his UFC debut against Yushin Okami. He is not the same fighter that was defeated by Kendall Grove, but rather one of the most well rounded fighters in the middleweight division.
The fight that was scheduled against Vitor Belfort at UFC 153 was the better fight to judge where Belcher was at in the division, but the cancellation of UFC 151 caused a cancellation for that fight.
There is a lot more riding on this fight for Belcher than he has ever had in his UFC career. If Belcher can win this fight, he could possibly be within one or two fights of a title shot against Anderson Silva.
A win at UFC 155 could set up a logical fight against Chris Weidman for the No. 1 contender in the middleweight division after the winner of Bisping and Belfort in January. Belcher went from hyped prospect to forgotten fighter and is now a top contender in the division after dealing with an injury that could have ruined his career. He has all the tools to challenge for the belt and at 28 years of age is fresh in his prime. This fight marks another step forward for Belcher and could get him the respect he has been calling for prior to Saturday’s fight.