(Please enjoy this Roy Jones Jr. boxing highlight video. And then, please remember that all those fights happened a very long time ago, in a very different sport than MMA)
Sadly, we may be closer than ever to an Anderson Silva vs. Roy Jones Jr. fight. On Thursday, Dana White told MMA Junkie that the former boxing pound for pound champ is coming to UFC 162 this Saturday in Vegas to discuss fighting Anderson Silva in the UFC.
Yahoo! Sports’ Kevin Iole also confirmed with Jones Jr. that he is meeting with White to discuss fighting “The Spider” under MMA rules in the UFC. Jones Jr., of course, is a future hall of fame boxer that is at least ten years out of his prime.
For years, Jones Jr. looked unbeatable but over the past ten years he has lost seven times in fifteen outings, four of those losses coming by way of ugly KO or TKO. The forty four year-old needs to give up fighting of any kind for the good of his health.
Jones Jr. has been so far gone for so long that, even in 2009 when Silva was vocal about wanting to box him, it seemed like a dangerous proposition for the former Olympian. Add a half decade and MMA rules into the mix and a Silva vs. Roy Jr. fight sounds almost masochistic.
For whatever reason, thogh, Anderson Silva has kept Jones Jr.’s name in his mouth for years, now. Often times it looked as if he used the threat of boxing Roy as a bargaining chip with the UFC but this is the first time that White has seemed at all open to the idea of his middleweight champ fighting Jones Jr. and they are talking about doing it in MMA.
As we all know, if White wants to put together a sham boxing vs. MMA bout in the UFC, he can get it done. We’re not sure what Silva or White think they will accomplish by trotting out yet another sadly brain-bruised former boxing champion to the Octagon and having a UFC legend beat them with ease, but it now appears that this “super fight” might be the only one we’re getting with Silva anytime soon.
Then again, this is far from the first time Jones Jr. or Silva have campaigned for this fight. Heck, it isn’t even the first time Jones Jr. has said he’d go to a UFC event to watch Silva in person and try to make a bout happen. Despite all that, the fight has never happened.
Let’s hope it still won’t. Ultimately, we can’t blame promoters for being promoters and fighters for being fighters.
How can Dana White ignore two huge names saying they want to fight each other and make him a lot of money? How can we fault fighters like Roy for wanting to fight, even when they are far removed from their prime?
Ultimately, it will be the responsibility of any and all athletic commissions to not allow this fight or any like it to happen. Allowing a former boxing champion who is in his mid forties and who has spent the last decade getting pummeled to continue to box is itself embarrassing to the commissions that continue to sanction Jones Jr. To allow him to also take on perhaps the best mixed martial arts fighter in history, while he is still in his apparent prime, in the boxer’s first ever MMA bout would be unconscionable.
We can’t imagine any real commission, like those of Nevada, New Jersey or California sanctioning an Anderson Silva vs. Roy Jones Jr. MMA bout. Well, we hope not.
James Toney was sanctioned to fight Randy Couture, after all.