The war of words between UFC middleweights Michael Bisping and Chael Sonnen may be coming to a head.
The UFC and Spike TV are reportedly planning on featuring the two outspoken and controversial fighters as coaches for The Ultimate Fighter 14, which is expected to debut in September.
Dave Meltzer reports that the plan would include a pay-per-view fight between the two in December with the winner receiving a middleweight title shot sometime in 2012.
The two fighters have recently gone on record claiming they would greatly appreciate the opportunity to fight each other.
Sonnen (25-11-1) called out Bisping (21-3) following Bisping’s controversial win over Jorge Rivera at UFC 127 in February in which the Brit spit towards Rivera’s cornermen following the bout. Subsequently, Bisping stated that he would welcome a fight with Sonnen because he is “an amazing fighter”.
Meltzer reports that several obstacles must be passed before Sonnen can return to the UFC, including his impending sentencing hearing for mortgage fraud on April 8 where it’s expected that the former number one contender will receive two years probation and a $10,000 fine. He will also be forced to forfeit his real estate license.
Sonnen will also need to reapply for his fight license after being suspended for a positive drug test from his August loss to middleweight champ Anderson Silva.
A private meeting was held several weeks ago, according to Meltzer, between UFC President Dana White, CEO Lorenzo Fertitta, Sonnen and the Nevada State Athletic Commission in order to try and smooth over the situation regarding Sonnen’s license. Sonnen claimed that he had a conversation with NSAC executive director Keith Kizer about the approval of utilizing testosterone during his hearing before the California State Athletic Commission, a claim that Kizer vehemently denied.
When asked by Kizer why he lied, Sonnen stated that “he didn’t mean to imply that he directly talked with (Kizer), but that his manager, Matt Lindland, had gone over his need for medical use of testosterone (with Kizer)”.
Bisping may face his own issues in getting licensed in Nevada for his actions during and after the Rivera bout and already had a significant post-fight bonuses withheld by the UFC as punishment for his actions.