Although there will be plenty of casual fans asking “who’s this guy again?”, when Luke Rockhold steps into the cage to fight Vitor Belfort Saturday night, of course that doesn’t mean the former Strikeforce champ isn’t a ridiculously talented fighter. In fact, since the UFC knows that very question will likely be asked several thousand times during the UFC on FX 8 broadcast, they’ve given Rockhold a chance an opportunity to take out Belfort. What better way is there to introduce a skilled and marketable fighter to the wider masses, than to have him fight one of the promotion’s biggest names?
While it remains to be seen if Rockhold can beat Belfort, or if he will be the latest, younger fighter the veteran defeats, the 28 year-old-fighter is looking to make a big splash in his Octagon debut. While that may sound like a given, Rockhold is hoping to score such an impressive win in fact, he wants to challenge for the title ASAP.
In a recent appearance on the MMA’s Great Debate Podcast, Rockhold relayed:
“I’m looking to put myself back on top. I want to be that champion again. I’m used to being the top dog and I’m no longer the top dog right now, so I’m looking forward to solidifying my spot.
“I want to get that title shot as soon as possible. That’s why Vitor was in my sights to take at the time. As long as I go out there and put on a good performance, I don’t know why they would deny me.”
If Rockhold captures headlines Saturday with a highlight reel finish or dominates the renowned Belfort, he very well could get tapped for a title shot in the near future. Rockhold will have defeated the #2 ranked middleweight, and neither Yushin Okami or Michael Bisping are going to face the winner of Anderson Silva-Chris Weidman.