UFC 126: the staredown that leaves it all up in the air

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Anderson and Belfort stare down. Photos: Carlos Ozório.

This Wednesday, the UFC 126 press conference in Las Vegas gathered the main fighters on the card, in the Mandalay Bay convention center. Although in attendance were such attention-grabbing beasts as Forrest Griffin, Rich Franklin, Jon Jones and Ryan Bader, the focus of most of the questions was turned to Anderson Silva and Vitor Belfort, the stars of the main event putting the middleweight belt on the line.

Hence the strong presence from the Brazilian press, at a press conference in the USA where questions were divided between Portuguese and English. If on one side Vitor skillfully dealt with the media with long-winded and political answers, Anderson often kept his responses short, repeating the “It will be funny” clichê. The champion dodged certain subjects, mainly those pertaining to Vitor Belfort. Some statements made the day, though.

“To me, the fight of the century will be against my close. It will be funny,” said the Spider, not feeling the slightest pressure.

“The belt to me is just a symbol of what the UFC represents. I have a lot more to give than that. Everyone who has fought for the title has done so because they had what it took to do so. I don’t think Vitor is better than the others,” he said in closing.

The look on Belfort’s face during the final staredown for photos shows a confident fighter. Anderson may be the favorite, but in the octagon everything things look like the chances for success are even. More than ever, there is the impression that any prediction made may be premature. Belfort looked fierce.

“The psychological factor used to get to me, but now I fight for fun and don’t feel pressure. I’ll give my best if just out of respect for my opponent. I don’t know what will happen, but I trained a lot, gave my all. You don’t get to the top of the mountain without sacrifice. Buy the pay-per-view!” said Belfort.

For further news in the lead-up to UFC 126, stay tuned to GRACIEMAG.com. In the meantime, check out some photos from the press conference.

[flickr set=72157625840746045]

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