The UFC returned to Brazil on June 23 to host UFC 147: Silva vs. Franklin, as former UFC middleweight champion Rich Franklin stepped in as a late replacement to take on Brazil’s own Wanderlei Silva.

Vitor Belfort was expected to fight Silva in a battle of The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil coaches, but with a injury to “The Phenom”, Franklin happily took the rematch fight between he and Silva, who first fought back in 2009.

Also on the card were the finals of The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil reality show. Middleweights Cezar “Mutante” Ferreira and Sergio Moraes shined in the co-main event, while Rony “Jason” Mariano Bezerra squared off with Godofredo “Pepey” Castro in the featherweight finale.

A total of five bouts were shown only on pay-per-view, while FX and Facebook aired the entire preliminary card.

Franklin outlasts Silva in rematch of UFC 99

After 25 minutes between the two legends, Rich Franklin improved to 2-0 over Wanderlei Silva.

The first of five rounds was contested on the feet, with both men landing their share of strikes. But the edge was given to Franklin, who seemed to land more punches and kicks.

Franklin continued to land more significant strikes in the second round, but “The Axe Murderer” showed up and blasted Franklin. Silva remained on top pouring down heavy shots, but “Ace” held on to see another round.

The pace slowed in the third round, but Franklin had the upperhand. It appeared Silva was tired after the numerous amounts of shots thrown in the second, which allowed Franklin to win the round with a takedown and good ground and pound.

“Ace” continued to control the pace on the feet, as Silva continued to wear down. After a low blow to Franklin, the Chicago native picked up another round to his credit.

Franklin stayed smart on his feet in the final round by circling out and working his jab. Silva didn’t exchange until about a minute left, and the two slugged it out until the bell sounded.

All three judges awarded Franklin the winner by unanimous decision.

Ferreira claims The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil middleweight crown

The co-main event featured the middleweight finals of The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil, as Team Belfort teammates Sergio Moraes and Cezar Ferreira squared off. In the end, Ferreira gained the upperhand to earn the six-figure UFC contract.

The striker Ferreira came out looking to land his arsenal of kicks, both high and low, but Moraes didn’t back down. Moraes stayed in, and even landed some shots of his own in the closely-contested opening round.

“Mutante” started the second round off with fireworks, as he landed a well-telegraphed wheel kick that landed to the head of Moraes. But after gaining some momentum, Moraes swarmed on Ferreira with elbows and punches. No finish occured, but an exciting round nonetheless.

Another close round in the third frame, with both men having their moments. Moraes landed some nice combinations, while “Mutante” dropped his opponent once again.

After three rounds of action, the judges awarded the fight to Ferreira by unanimous decision.

“Jason” edges out “Pepey” for The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil featherweight title

In the featherweight finals of The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil, Rony “Jason” Bezerra captured the six-figure UFC contract by defeating Godofredo “Pepey” Castro by unanimous decision.

The opening round was a difficult one to score, as both men did damage in different ways. “Jason” stayed on top for most of the frame, but “Pepey” attacked from the bottom with submission attempts and elbows.

“Pepey” pulled guard once again, but the two featherweights returned to their feet. “Jason” opened up more with some wild shots, but no major, one-sided offense was shown through the midway point of the fight.

After two close rounds, the third was nearly even again. But the more significant damage was in favor of “Jason”, as he got the better of the exchanges.

No sudden victory round was needed, as “Jason” wins the first ever Ultimate Fighter: Brazil title.

Werdum takes care of business over Russow

In the lone heavyweight bout of the evening, Mike Russow stepped into a hectic environment in Fabricio Werdum’s home country of Brazil.

Werdum decided to keep the fight standing instead of going to his ground game. The Brazilian landed a nice uppercut to the chin of Russow, and finished his opponent off his punches from top position.

After the fight, Werdum stated that he wants a rematch against current UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos.

Dias impresses in debut over Alcantara

To open up the pay-per-view main card, two Brazilians went toe-to-toe as Hacran Dias impressed in his first appearance in the Octagon, defeating Yuri Alcantara by decision.

Making his UFC debut, Dias didn’t show any Octagon jitters, and controlled his fellow Brazilian opponent throughout the first round. Alcantara defended well asked submission attempts, but didn’t score enough to win the round.

Alcantara looked to come out more aggressive in the second frame, but Dias was able to secure his third takedown of the night. Alcantara attacked an arm looking for a armbar, but was unsuccessful, as Dias stayed ontop the majority of the round.

Down on the scorecards, Alcantara needed to do some drastic to win the fight. However, Dias scored yet again with the takedown, and continued to control the fight. Alcantara looked to finish with seconds remaining, but was too little too late.

Dias got his hand raised with a unanimous decision win.

Preliminary Card Summary

After some aggression at the weigh-ins the day before, the match-up between Rodrigo Damm and Anistavio Medeiros was sure to be a scrap. Damm ended up catching his opponent with a punch, then took Medeiros’s back to finish the fight by rear-naked choke.

Two middleweights squared off next, as Francisco Trinaldo avoided the takedowns of Delson Heleno, and landed several hammerfists to force the referee to stop the bout.

After three grueling rounds of action, Huge “Wolverine” Viana and John Teixeira went to a judges decision, where Viana picked up the win by a narrow split decision.

Thiago de Oliveira Perpetuo and Leonardo Mafra Teixeira went evenly matched through two rounds of action, but in the third, Perpetuo landed a right hook that dropped his opponent, then finished Teixeira off with punches on the ground for the TKO win.

Wagner Campos put on a dominant display through rounds one and two, but Marcos Vinicius came back in the third to defeat Campos by knockout in round three.

To open up the Facebook prelims, Milton Viera and Felipe Arantes fought a tough 15 minutes, but in the end, no winner was determined. The judges scored the bout a split draw.

Full Results

Rich Franklin def. Wanderlei Silva by unanimous decision (49-46, 49-46, 49-46)
Cezar “Mutante” Ferreira def. Sergio Moraes by unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Rony “Jason” def. Godofredo “Pepey” by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Fabricio Werdum def. Mike Russow by TKO (punches). Round 1, 2:28
Hacran Dias def. Yuri Alcantara by unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Rodrigo Damm def. Anistavio Medeiros by submission (rear-naked choke). Round 1, 2:12
Francisco Trinaldo def. Delson Heleno by TKO (strikes). Round 1, 4:21
Hugo Viana def. John Teixeira by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Thiago de Perpetuo def. Leonardo Mafra by TKO (punches). Round 3, 0:41
Marcos Vinicius def. Wagner Campos by TKO (strikes). Round 3, 1:04
Felipe Arantes and Milton Viera fought to a split draw (29-28, 28-29, 28-28)

Photo: Rich Franklin (right) squares off with Wanderlei Silva (MMAJunkie)

About The Author

Corey Adams
Staff Writer

Corey Adams didn't grow up watching mixed martial arts, considering the UFC was just getting started the year he was born, but in his teenage years, witnessed the action and has fallen in love with the sport. Corey was the first to join The MMA Corner staff -- other than founder Josh Davis -- and has been writing for the site ever since. Corey attends Austin Peay State University, where he majors in Communications with a focus on journalism. When he's not covering MMA, Corey is still writing on many sports with both local and campus newspapers. His favorite sports teams are the Atlanta Braves and Denver Broncos. Follow him on Twitter at the link below.