UFC’s White: NAC will ‘bury’ Silva


What looked to be one of the most heavily anticipated meetings of the Nevada Athletic Commission in quite some time has lost some of its luster.

There still should be plenty of drama, though, when the NAC meets at the Grant Sawyer Building at 2 p.m. today.

The date had been circled on the calendars of mixed martial arts fans as the date when Vitor Belfort was going to apply for a license to fight and answer for a surprise February test administered by the NAC.

He took some of the mystery away by acknowledging last week that the test showed elevated testosterone levels, but it was widely known he was on testosterone replacement therapy. The discussion was likely to center on whether he was abusing the treatment.

But then his opponent for UFC 175 on July 5, Chael Sonnen, failed a surprise test of his own. When the results were announced last week, he retired.

With a fight no longer scheduled, Belfort will not apply for a license and therefore will not appear before the commission today.

The commission will however discuss a temporary penalty for Sonnen, even though he has said he will not fight again.

Then there’s the case of Wanderlei Silva. Belfort was actually a replacement for Silva, who was pulled from the card last month when it was alleged he evaded NAC drug-testers looking to take a surprise sample.

Silva, who has blamed a language barrier for the incident, has been asked to appear at today’s meeting to answer the allegation.

UFC president Dana White doesn’t think it will end well for Silva.

“I think, and I honestly know nothing about what’s going to happen, but I would have to say they’re probably going to make a serious example out of Wanderlei,” White said. “When the commission shows up to drug test you, it is what it is. If you’re doing something wrong you’re going to get caught. Running from it just makes you guilty. I love Wanderlei. Wanderlei has always been a great guy. You don’t walk out on a drug test, especially in Nevada. There’s no way in hell (the NAC is) letting him off. No way in hell.

“They are going to bury Wanderlei Silva. In my humble opinion. They’re going to bury him.”

■ REMATCH LIKELY — Renan Barao is “probably” going to get a rematch with new bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw, White told reporters in Vancouver, British Columbia, before UFC 174.

Dillashaw took the belt from Barao in May.

“We sat there and started looking through the list of guys to fight T.J., and there is a list which is a great thing, but how do you not give it to Barao, the guy who was undefeated all those years?” White asked. “I agree he got a five-round ass-whooping and got finished, but how does it make sense to not give him the rematch? And who doesn’t want to see it?

“When you watch that fight last time, people were losing their minds because nobody saw that coming. They go in there and put on an unbelievable war. Is that not what you want to see again?”

■ WSOF 10 — Las Vegas-based World Series of Fighting returns to the Hard Rock Hotel on Saturday for an event featuring three title fights.

The main card will air live on NBC Sports Network (Cable 38) at 6 p.m.

David Branch will fight Jesse Taylor in the main event. The matchup serves as the final of the organization’s middleweight tournament and will determine the organization’s first champion in the division.

Georgi Karakhanyan will defend the featherweight belt against Rick Glenn and women’s strawweight champion Jessica Aguilar puts her belt on the line against Emi Fujino.

The preliminary card features several local fighters, including Jimmy Spicuzza and Rudy Morales. Also, Californian Ashlee Evans Smith looks to follow up on her victory over transgendered fighter Fallon Fox when she takes on Marciea Allen.

WSOF’s July 5 event in Florida took another hit as Josh Burkman injured his elbow and has been forced to pull out of a fight with Jon Fitch. Burkman was already filling in for injured Jake Shields, who himself was replacing Rousimar Palhares after the WSOF welterweight champion decided to pull out of the fight to care for his ailing mother.

Dennis Hallman has agreed to step in to fight Fitch.

Contact reporter Adam Hill at ahill@reviewjournal.com or 702-224-5509. Follow him on Twitter: @adamhilllvrj.

 

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