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By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief
Chael Sonnen addressed his fighting future this week, speaking to Ariel Helwani on Fuel TV's "UFC Tonight" program. Following his loss to Anderson Silva at UFC 148, there are certainly questions about where that leaves him in the middleweight division, and as to whether or not he'd have another shot at the title waiting for him down the line.
For now, Sonnen's not committing to any decision, but he did throw out at least one possibility for his next move.
"I love this sport and I would never want to retire. My coach Clayton will be the one that retires me based on my results and productivity in practice," Sonnen said. "I could have easily defeated [Silva], physically I'm fine, mentally im fine. Give me a couple of weeks to settle in and when you get in the spot that I am in, we will see."
"Anderson could retire any day now. And there is simply an option to start over by changing weight class. My mentors have done it and it could happen. I would go up to 205. Jon Jones. There are some great guys at 185, but traditionally and historically it is a good way to get a fresh start and start over."
Penick's Analysis: A move to light heavyweight would be smart for Sonnen at this point. There is always the possibility that he makes another run at middleweight, but after such a convincing loss in the rematch, a third fight with Silva will not be nearly as anticipated or marketable as the second encounter. Should Silva leave the sport in the next year or two, Sonnen could be in the mix as the middleweight replacement, but who knows how many years he himself has left. Light heavyweight would give him a chance to make a run in a different division, with different opponents and new opportunities. That's not a bad idea at all.
MMATorch Columnists Rich Hansen and Matt Pelkey discussed this as a possible move on Tuesday's edition of the MMATorch Livecast at BlogTalkRadio.com. Listen in here: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/mmatorch/2012/07/11/mmatorch-tuesday-night-livecast
[Chael Sonnen art by Grant Gould (c) MMATorch.com]
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Jamie Penick, editor-in-chief
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