The two coaches for the inaugural season of TUF Brasil couldn’t have been better picked to bolster Rede Globo’s television audience.
Vitor Belfort and Wanderlei Silva, rivals since the first time the two faced off, at the UFC in São Paulo in 1998, were just announced as the trainers, at the pre-UFC 142 press conference. Charismatic and communicative, the pair have a bona fide legion of fans.
The athletes to train under Belfort and Silva will be announced tomorrow. The show will launch on March 25, 2012, and will be filmed by Globo in São Paulo.
Belfort and Wanderlei Silva have always been rivals. Wanderlei appeared on the scene in devastating fashion at a time when Vitor was one of Brazil’s most famous fighters. After quickly knocking Silva out at UFC Brazil in 1998, Belfort told GRACIEMAG, “Who was he to fight be at that time?”
Wanderlei went on to make a name for himself, becoming one of the biggest stars of the now-defunct Japanese promotion Pride F, while Vitor plied his trade in the West in the UFC cage. Talk of a rematch between the two has arisen on a number of occasions but never came to fruition.
“I really want a rematch with Vitor. I want to smash that playboy face of his,” said Wand in NOCAUTE magazine back in 2004.]
TUF Brazil will not be broadcast regularly in the USA. There, the coaches for the upcoming season are Urijah Faber and Dominick Cruz, who will also square off in a rematch at the end of the season, as will Wand and Vitor.