UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva will defend his title on April 10 at UFC 112 in Abu Dhabi, UFC President Dana White told MMA Fighting on Friday, but is still awaiting a new opponent after Vitor Belfort was forced to withdraw from their scheduled matchup on Thursday with a shoulder injury.
Chael Sonnen, who earned the next middleweight title shot with a win over Nate Marquardt at UFC 109, and Demian Maia, who was also victorious at the Saturday event, top the list of potential opponents for Silva, but both suffered cuts in their bouts and may be unable to make the quick turnaround.
Meanwhile, Belfort has already undergone surgery for a lingering shoulder injury and today told Sherdog that he can resume training in four months for a likely return to the Octagon by year’s end:
“I’ve already had the surgery on my left shoulder. Actually Lorenzo (Fertitta) was aware that I was feeling really bad pain in my shoulder for a long time. I’ve already had three injections since I was scheduled to fight Fedor, but lately the pain got really unbearable and my doctor decided to take an (MRI) and it showed chronic injury that was getting worse. My doctor, Michel Simoni, said that if I did not stop and do the surgery immediately, I was running serious risk of my shoulder going out of place. Also I was already losing the power of my left arm. How could I fight (without) my strongest hand?
I’m feeling good, and according to the doctor, in four months I can start returning to training little by little. Now I have a long journey of work with physical therapy every day. I think before the end of the year, I’ll be back in the Octagon. No matter if it’s fighting for the belt or not, I’ll be back 100 percent.”
Pictured: Anderson Silva