Dana White hints at Vitor Belfort-Luke Rockhold fight

Eshter Lin

Middleweight contender Vitor Belfort has indicated his desire to fight a champion. Luke Rockhold finished his time in Strikeforce as middleweight champion.

Sounds like a match to make.

Pressed on future opponents for the former UFC light heavyweight champion on the heels of his spectacular finish of Michael Bisping, UFC president Dana White told reporters on Thursday that he's looking to put together a bout between Belfort and Rockhold.

"Rockhold," White said. "That's what we're talking about."

In the case of Rockhold (10-1), a bout with the former champion could be exactly what the fighter needs to raise his profile with the masses. The American Kickboxing Academy fighter rolled over the competition in Strikeforce and defeated Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza to win that title on Sept. 10, 2011. But Rockhold's rise came during Strikeforce's slow, painful downfall, so he's not yet as big a name as his skills would seem to suggest.

For Belfort, meanwhile, the future path isn't quite so clear-cut. He's lost to both middleweight champion Anderson Silva and light heavyweight champion Jon Jones, neither of whom are inclined to give him a title shot any time soon.

White conceded, however, that if the veteran Belfort can continue winning, he could force his way back into the title picture.

"If Vitor beats Bisping and he knocks off a couple contenders at 185, it's hard not to give him a title shot again."

White didn't give a timetable as to when Belfort might meet Rockhold. One thing White did, do, is shoot down the prospects of a Jones-Belfort rematch, which Belfort asked for in the cage following his win over Bisping.

"[It was] weird he called out Jones," White said.

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