Perhaps Chael Sonnen was onto something when his insisted his showdown with Anderson Silva wasn't going to happen.
The long-awaited rematch between Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Middleweight Champion and the outspoken thorn in his side appears to be headed in a new direction, possibly even Las Vegas, Nevada, according to a report from the Brazilian news outlet O Globo earlier today (April 18, 2012).
The possible rescheduling shouldn't come as a huge surprise because UFC President Dana White recently addressed a potential scheduling conflict last weekend (April 14, 2012) after the UFC on Fuel TV 2 event. In particular, a United Nations Conference that is scheduled to be held the same week the mixed martial arts (MMA) promotion planned the summer showdown at the 80,000-seat outdoor stadium in Rio de Janeiro:
"The problem is, they don't like the idea of us coming the same time this United Nations convention is going on. The other problem is hotel rooms. Most of the hotel rooms are being taken up. And we don't think, we know that the Anderson Silva-Chael Sonnen fight is one of the biggest sporting events this year, in the world. I think it's a huge sporting event. I think people will come to Rio from all over the world. I think we're going to need hotel rooms. Hopefully we'll get this thing done the next few days, one way or the other."
It appears now like it may be the other way. And the promotion has apparently set it sights on adding the Anderson Silva vs. Chael Sonnen rematch to the UFC 148 card, which is expected to take place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in "Sin City" on July, 7, 2012.
However, like several other high-profile fighters these days, Sonnen's track record with the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) is far from squeaky clean.
The prospect of Sonnen being allowed to fight in Nevada after all of his issues with its Athletic Commission seems cloudy at best. Executive Director Keith Kizer informed MMAmania.com that Sonnen will have to apply for his fight license in the state if the rematch against Silva does, in fact, get moved to Las Vegas.
And one can only imagine how much of a circus that could turn out to be.
UFC 148, in its current form, is scheduled to feature a main event Bantamweight title fight between current champion Dominick Cruz taking on Urijah Faber; however, the promotion has yet to officially announce the fight and/or the traditional Independence Day weekend extravaganza.
Nonetheless, inserting a massive fight like Silva-Sonnen 2 would certainly add colorful fireworks to any fight card, much less on on Fourth of July weekend. No other alternative plans for the remaining fights on the UFC 147 fight card, if any even exist, are known at this time.
In addition, keep in mind that UFC officials have yet to confirm any swapping of dates and/or locations for the massive fight. However, where there is smoke, there often is fire.
As always, stay tuned to MMAmania as more details surface.