(Well, I guess it’s back to the dollar menu for a while.)
Anderson Silva was recently fined $50,000 for missing what the UFC described as a day of media obligations in Los Angeles to promote his July UFC 162 middleweight title defense against Chris Weidman. A pissed-off Dana White said of Silva, “Everybody wants more money, more money, more money, but nobody wants to sell the fight or go out and talk to the media. Talking to the media is part of your job, whether you like it or not.”
Had Silva really turned the corner from giving his usual reluctant, terse (if occasionally clever) answers to press and gone Full Diaz — skipping media events entirely with both middle fingers in the air? According to the champ, no. Although his response to getting punished by the organization was quite Diazian. In short: Bro, Anderson totally didn’t even know about these appointments. And, besides, his job is to train and fight, not talk.
“I’ve never missed any commitment to the UFC. I would never have made the trip to Brazil if I knew I had to be in Los Angeles,” Silva said, according to a translation by Sherdog of an interview given to Brazilian outlet, Veja.
On July 6th, top-ranked UFC middleweight contender Chris Weidman will return from a year-long layoff to challenge Anderson Silva, considered by many to be the greatest mixed martial artist who’s ever lived. It goes without saying that the UFC 162 main event is the greatest test of Weidman’s career — and one that would make most middleweights more than a little nervous — but the Long Island-bred “All-American” isn’t the least bit intimidated. And he knows exactly how he’s going to steal the belt that Anderson’s held for six-and-a-half years.
CagePotato reporter Brian J. D’Souza caught up with Weidman recently at Grants MMA Gym in Toronto, and got his take on a number of interesting subjects, including his gameplan for the Spider, the rib injury that spurred his foray into MMA, his surprising contract status with the UFC, and more. Some highlights:
Why he hasn’t signed a new contract with the UFC yet: “I’m not looking to negotiate an extra couple grand right before a title fight. My goal is to be champion, and I know that’s where you get the real money. That’s where you get the ‘Anderson Silva money,’ so that’s what I’m looking to get.”
How he’ll beat Silva: “I think the biggest thing is once you get him down, to stay relaxed and not to be so tense. I think I have a pretty smooth, aggressive game, and I’m pretty relentless with my cardio, and that’s one of my things that I have most pride in. So, I feel like I’m going to have the cardio to where he’s going to break before I break. I’m going to be all over him.”
Anderson’s mind games: “One of Anderson’s Silva’s best traits in MMA is that he gets inside people’s heads. Before they even step in the cage, he has a certain mystique about him that intimidates people. He earned that over the years. But even when they get in the cage with him, he makes sure to make them feel as if he’s on a whole ‘nother level. And then he waits for them to believe him in that, and he freakin’ mentally and physically breaks them…I’m just going to be confident. I’m not going to be worried about what he’s doing, I’m worried about what I’m doing.”
Now that he’s got his wish, he’s also apparently not interested in the potential security of a new contract until after he fights Silva, either. The young challenger recently told MMA Junkie Radio that he may not sign a new contract with the UFC before fighting Silva.
“I think we’re just going to keep the contract,” he told Junkie.
“I’m definitely OK with making what I was making. I think I was making $24,000 (to show) and $24,000 (as a win bonus). I want to do that because then after I beat Anderson like I plan on doing, then obviously the contract will jump up more than if I was to rip up the contract now. I’m ready to put all my eggs in one basket and put my money where my mouth is.”
There’s a chance Weidman might have a shot at getting a raise if he were to sign a new contract with the UFC before fighting the champion but it appears as if he wants the jackpot or nothing at all. Weidman seems so confident that he’ll be the new 185 pound champion after his next fight that he’d like to delay negotiating with the UFC until after he’s wearing the gold.
Ballsy move, Chris.
Or, an impossible move. That will likely depend on how many fights he’s got on his contract and what the UFC’s current policy about these types of things currently are.
During a recent interview with Sports Net Canada, UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre took a moment to shit on UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva. St. Pierre was called out publicly for months by Silva, who wanted the welterweight champion to come up in weight and fight him in a super fight.
St. Pierre will instead fight Nick Diaz Saturday at UFC 158. Silva will finally fight Chris Weidman later this year. St. Pierre trains regularly in New York City with Phil Nurse and Renzo Gracie boys. Weidman’s Jiu Jitsu lineage goes back to Renzo and GSP calls the #1 middleweight challenger his friend.
And he thinks his relatively unknown friend will smack around Silva with ease.
“I believe he’s going to beat Anderson Silva. I believe it’s a bad match-up for Anderson Silva. Very bad,” he said with a smile. “Not only he’s going to beat, I believe he’s going to beat Anderson Silva. I believe it’s not going to be too long, that fight.”
GSP does leave himself one out, though. He implies that Silva intentionally signed to fight Weidman only now because the challenger will be coming off of major surgery and a long layoff. “Anderson Silva is smart,” Georges says.
“The time to fight [Weidman] is now.”
What do you think, ‘taters? Will GSP be as giddy as Floyd Mayweather was after Manny Pacquiao got knocked out in his last fight if Weidman manages to dethrone Silva? Do you agree that Weidman has a good chance at not just beating Anderson but doing so quickly and with ease?
(If 10 cc’s of Desflurane can’t keep this kid down, NOTHING CAN.)
I was there. I was there the last time Anderson Silva was listed asanythingless than a 3-to-1 favorite over his opponent. It was called 2011. Barack Obama was President, George W. Bush was in the White House, and Bill Clinton was running this country into the ground. The event was UFC 126, which was being held in a little hole in the wall town in what is now Nevada. Some fella by the name of Vitor shows up, starts picking off so-called “former middleweight champions.” Before we knew what hit us, he was trying to dethrone old Andy in our own backyard. So Vitor had to go.
Well, that was a lot of buildup for nothing. In the hours since this was originally written, Anderson has already improved to just under a 3-to-1 favorite. Still, it seems that the bookies are giving Weidman’s grappling prowess a lot of respect all things considered.
ALBANY — Chris Weidman will finally get the title shot against UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva on July 4th weekend at UFC 161 in Las Vegas, Newsday has learned. [Update: The fight will actually headline UFC 162, on July 6th. UFC 161 is the Winnipeg event that will be headlined by Barao vs. Wineland.]
UFC chief executive Lorenzo Fertitta on Wednesday told Weidman, a Baldwin native, in the Capitol building that he spoke to Silva and that he agreed to the fight.
“Dream come true,” Weidman said. “Ever since I’ve been fighting, Anderson Silva has been the champion and I’ve been visualizing beating him. Now I have the opportunity. I have to make the most of it.”