Chael Sonnen's hard fought wrestling decision win over Wanderlei Silva marks the first time in four years the former UFC title contender has made it into the win column, and it must have been nice getting back to a place where people are asking who you might take on next rather than whether you’ll retire. There was still a little bit of hang ‘em up talk in this post-Bellator NYC interview with MMA Fighting's Ariel Helwani, but Sonnen managed to cook up a couple of credible options for his fighting future.
First, the possibility of a rematch against Wanderlei.
"Let's be very honest here, he's been sidelined for a while," Sonnen said. "I had that same experience with Tito. It hurts so bad to lose, I just never envisioned it happening, then when it happens and you're faced with the reality of 'Oh my God I just lost to this guy that sucks, I suck.' Well, I just passed that to Wanderlei. I was the worst fighter in Bellator when I woke up this morning, whelp, he is now, I got that that off my back. So I imagine he'll want a rematch. I just get it, it's what I would do. I'd give it, I'll fight any of these guys."
And then his victory speech calling out the freshly KO'd Fedor Emelianenko.
Chael Sonnen has spoken #BellatorNYCPosted by Bellator MMA on Saturday, June 24, 2017
"Don't misinterpret that, I'm on a legends ass whupping tour," he said. "And there's only so many of them around here, and Fedor is the next one around here. And I believe that fight was being looked at, so it's like look, if we're going to do this fight anyway, let's make it my idea. And I was never kicking a guy when he's down. Don't forget, he was the curtain jerker and I was the main event. I'm gonna be the main event next time. I was pulling Fedor up!"
As crazy as Sonnen vs Emelianenko might sound, it's nothing compared to another seed Chael planted, and that's with new Bellator arrival Rory MacDonald.
"I know Rory MacDonald and I are going to cross paths eventually," Sonnen said. "And I know, wierd, calling out a guy that's 170 pounds. There's a story behind it. ... Rory knows what happened, we have to fight. I have no choice."
You've got to hand it to Chael Sonnen, he's a true moneyweight, willing to move up or down (or force his opponents to move up or down) so long as the paycheck is worth it.