(Video courtesy of YouTube/TUF)
Sure Anderson Silva has a date with
Chael Sonnen the winner of Chael Sonnen and Mark Munoz this summer, but when you think about it, there really aren’t many fights left for the dominant UFC middleweight champion at 185, so why not have him move up?
Anderson has a plethora of reasons why he likely won’t fight at 205 and most of them concern loyalty to friends like Lil’ Nog and Jon Jones, but from a fan’s perspective, a move up in weight is the only one that makes sense for “The Spider.”
Look at how he toyed with Ryan Bader in the TUF sparring session, basically letting him punch him in the chin as hard as he wanted to. Granted, Bader has improved from his technique of charging forward with arm punches, but I really don’t see a match-up between the two going any differently now. Silva made one former UFC light heavyweight champ look stupid and he would likely do the same to most of the division’s top contenders, so why not have him step up?
We’ll tell you why.
In spite of Dana White’s assertions that he wants to see Anderson fight Jon Jones or Georges St-Pierre, why would he fuck with the money making formula that seems to be working? That would be like Pepsi buying Coke and starting a campaign to make the other one look bad.
The number one reason it won’t happen, is it would delegitimize the middleweight title if Silva vacated it, making it the silver medal for whoever wins it. Say Chael Sonnen beats whoever else the UFC decides should challenge him for the vacant strap, they would essentially be the winner of the losers Silva beat. It would be like winning a Strikeforce title after the *real* champs left for the UFC.
Another reson why it is unlikely we’ll see Anderson put the 205-pound class on notice, if Jon Jones still holds the belt at the time and both are willing to put personal feelings aside and do their jobs, is that it would tarnish one of their legacies. One man has to lose, and although I would put money on Silva’s chin and striking over Jones’ creativity and flashiness, it’s unlikely that the UFC will want to risk an outgoing champ on the cusp of retirement beating an up-and-coming face of the promotion like Jones.
The third reason why Anderson likely won’t transition to 205 is the glut of wrestlers who fight at that weight. Silva’s Achilles Heel is strong wrestling. We all saw what Sonnen did to him for four-and-a-half rounds and Chael isn’t half the wrestler guys like Rashad Evans, Phil Davis and Dan Henderson are. Hendo, who could very well surprise Jones when they fight, was able to take Anderson down at will before giving up his back and being rear-naked-choked. A veteran like Dan doesn’t make the same mistake twice, unless he’s named Chael Sonnen and the mistake is being triangled. Nobody wants to take on big challenging projects in their final years before retirement. We just want to coast and collect a pay check for not fucking up the menial tasks our bosses give us until our last day finally arrives. How many retirees do you know who learned HTML programming the last year before they retired? Exactly, so why would Anderson want to learn how to deal with big strong wrestlers?