Surreal. That’s a pretty apt description of most Anderson Silva fights, for better or worse. Dodging Forrest Griffin’s strikes like he was in the Matrix, standing on the cage against Stephan Bonnar, front-kicking Vitor Belfort in the face? Surreal. Dancing around Thales Leites and shouting “where’s your jiu-jitsu now, playboy?” at Demian Maia? Surreal.
But those pale in comparison to what happened last night. What happened last night, when Silva lost for the first time in seventeen fights because he pushed the envelope too far, was the definition of surreal. For the sake of trying to comprehend what happened, let’s recapitulate for a moment. The first round saw Chris Weidman, the new middleweight kingpin of the UFC, take Silva down. Faced with the area in which he was most vulnerable, Silva deftly rolled with what ground and pound Weidman offered and defended any submission attempts before getting back to his feet. The rest of the round was spent taunting Weidman and stuffing any attempts at taking the fight to the ground. At the end of the round, Silva inexplicably hugged Weidman before returning to his corner.
When the second round began, Silva was in complete control, mocking Weidman’s attempts to hurt him. It was a performance unlike any other. But Silva strayed too far to the edge; caught with his chin up in the middle of a Weidman combination, he was felled by a left hook. His eyes rolled back; he was out before he hit the ground, where Weidman followed with a salvo of ground and pound that was merely a formality. Somehow, Silva had lost his title even more than Weidman had won it.
They’ve smushed chins. They’ve mushed lips. But tonight at UFC 162 in Las Vegas, Anderson Silva and Chris Weidman will let their fists do the love-making, and the only bodily fluids being exchanged will be BLOOD. [Ed. note: Look, I'm doing my best here.] Whether the Brazilian G.O.A.T. makes his 11th middleweight title defense, or the “All-American” lives up to his Rocky-esque underdog hype, I think we’re in for a hell of a battle.
Handling our liveblog for the “Silva vs. Weidman” main card is Alex Giardini, who will be slingin’ live results after the jump beginning at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for the latest updates, and feel free to mouth off in the comments section.
Are Chris Weidman‘s chances for an upset as good as everybody seems to think they are? Is Tim Kennedy better at talking than he is at fighting? Does UFC 162 feature the most stacked Facebook prelims in the history of curtain-jerking? And Dave Herman‘s getting fired, right? Read on as CagePotato founding editor Ben Goldstein and staff writer Jared Jones debate these topics — and so much more — and be sure to come back tomorrow night for our “Silva vs. Weidman” liveblog, beginning with the FX prelims at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT.
Chris Weidman has become the fashionable pick for an upset against Anderson Silva. You don’t actually believe he’ll pull it off, do you? I mean, you’re not a moron, right?
JJ: Now,I may be a moron, but there is one thing I am not, sir, and that, sir, is a moron.
If we were to have this debate immediately after Weidman had finished knocking Mark Munoz into an ice cream cake-induced depression, I would have told you that Anderson Silva was a dead man walking. “Weidman brings the kind of grappling prowess that, like Chael P. Sonnen before him, will all but completely suffocate Andy’s offense,” I would say whilst smoking a corncob pipe and farting into a wine glass, “And his striking, while clearly not on Silva’s level, has improved enough to keep the soon-to-be former champ hesitant in those rare moments when he won’t be fighting off his back.” I would have mocked you for daring to claim otherwise, then had security escort you out of my chalet bungalow when you inevitably lost your cool like a common miscreant.
BG: I feel like this wave of Weidman-support isn’t so much based on realistic analysis of the matchup, so much as fans’ natural desire to see some change after seven years of having the same champion dominating the competition, and other UFC fighters’ totally understandable self-interest in having that dominant champion go away for a while. It’s wishful thinking, basically.
The good news is, Weidman has a long career still ahead of him. Three years from now, Anderson Silva might be retired, and Chris Weidman will still be beating up top contenders. He’ll have his moment. Saturday night will not be that moment.
Tim Kennedy seems to talk a lot for a guy without many significant wins. Will Roger Gracie silence him for once, or will Kennedy finally live up to his own hype?
We’re nearing one of the UFC’s biggest events of the year – UFC 162 – and so it’s the perfect time to get a little extra amped up for Anderson Silva vs. Chris Weidman and another of the night’s bouts. Weidman continues to talk himself up as the guy to dethrone middleweight champion Silva, and he’s joined by a number of other prominent MMA fighters who say he’s the perfect guy to beat Anderson.
Also, We get a sneak peak at Frankie Edgar’s training camp as he prepares to lose a controversially-close decision to Charles Oliveira. Oh yeah, there’s some apt Kanye West music at the end as well.
Do you think Weidman has a chance, nation? And, what other fight are you most looking forward to at UFC 162?
- Frankie Edgar vs. Charles Oliveira: Following his unsuccessful title challenge against Jose Aldo — which gave Edgar his third decision loss in a row — “The Answer” returns to the featherweight division to face dangerous grappler Charles Oliveira. Though Oliveira hasn’t competed since his knockout loss to Cub Swanson at UFC 152, his two previous fights resulted in submission victories over Jonathan Brookins and Eric Wisely. It’s a logical rebound fight for Edgar, and a huge opportunity for Oliveira.
- Cub Swanson vs. Dennis Siver: Speaking of Swanson, the Jackson’s MMA product is red-hot lately, with four straight victories in the UFC (three by KO/TKO). Fresh off his recent decision win over Dustin Poirier, Swanson will try to add to his streak against the hard-striking Dennis Siver, who is 2-0 since dropping to featherweight, with decision wins over Diego Nunes and Nam Phan.
CagePotato contributor Oliver Chan was on hand at this weekend’s MMA World Expo in New York City, where he got his microphone in front of a wide-range of MMA stars and personalities. We’ll be running highlights from his interviews all week. First up: A brief chat with former UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar, who is enjoying a rare moment of peace between his last epic battle and whatever comes next…
CAGEPOTATO: You just came off a tough fight against Jose Aldo, and everybody wants to know: What’s next on the agenda for you?
FRANKIE EDGAR: Yeah, it’s two weeks out and I really haven’t made any decision on what I’m gonna do. You know, I’m gonna get back in there, but I don’t know when — not too long, I don’t like taking too long of a break. I’m already training, so we’ll just see how it goes.
Do you think you’ll jump back up to lightweight?
I think I’ll stay at ’45 for now. We’ll see what happens in the future, though.
Is there any opponent in particular you’ll be gunning for?
Nah, I don’t pick people’s names out, really. We’ll talk to Dana [White] and Lorenzo [Fertitta], Joe Silva and these guys, and my team, and we’ll figure out something out, I’m sure.
(Rashad’s best days as a fighter may be behind him, but the man has mastered the art of walking away from fictional explosions.)
Despite what the title implies (or outright states, whatever), I don’t honestly think that Rashad Evans is making more than he is worth at this point in his UFC career. The man is a TUF winner, a former champion, and a relatively marketable draw who consistently resides in the upper-echelon of the division. That being said, when I came across the salary figures for UFC 156 and noticed that Evans had walked away from his unanimous decision loss to Antonio Rogerio Nogueira with an event high 300K, that was the first thought that entered my mind. I apologize for deceiving you and will see myself out.
But before I go, I’ll say this: The figures for UFC 156 were pretty standard, with everyone not named Chico Camus and oddly enough Ian McCall clearing five figures. I guess it’s hard to consider “Uncle Creepy” a UFC bust when the poor bastard’s making less than the average TUF alum to fight.
The full list of salaries is after the jump, along with our whimsical analysis, so check them out and let us know what you think in the comments section. Per usual, these numbers are void of any locker room bonuses, PPV cuts, training expenses, licensing fees, etc.
That was the text I received this morning from a friend who is very much a casual MMA fan regarding last night’s UFC 156. Even though I assumed that my friend was talking about the end result of Bigfoot vs. Overeem, that statement could just as easily apply to almost any other fight on the card. We’re all familiar with the cliché that any fighter can beat anyone else on any night at this level, but we rarely see the underdogs win as frequently – and as convincingly – as they did last night. Simply put, it was an awful night for the guys who were supposed to win.
So let’s start off with the fight that went exactly as we all assumed it would: Jose Aldo defeated Frankie Edgar by a close, yet unanimous decision. Naturally, Edgar grew stronger as the fight went on. And naturally, the fight was close enough to justify an immediate rematch if one were to be booked (it probably won’t but who knows), because that’s just how Frankie Edgar fights work.
It’s impossible to be disappointed with Frankie Edgar’s effort in any given fight, and last night was no exception. Edgar provided Aldo with his stiffest challenge to date – after the champion returned from the longest layoff in his career, mind you – but Aldo was simply the better fighter.
Tonight at UFC 156 in Las Vegas, Jose Aldo goes for his fourth-consecutive UFC featherweight title defense, while former lightweight champ Frankie Edgar attempts to become the third fighter in UFC history to pick up a belt in two different weight classes. And that’s just the cherry on top of a stacked Super Bowl Eve card, which is loaded with big names and high stakes from start to finish.
Round-by-round results from the Aldo vs. Edgar pay-per-view card will be stacking up after the jump beginning at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT, courtesy of George “Bigfoot” Shunick. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and please toss your own thoughts into the comments section.
Here at CagePotato, if we’re going to take the time to put together a rankings or list, it’s probably going to be one like this one. That doesn’t mean, however, that we’re opposed to taking part in others’ rankings. Take, for example, the Yahoo! Sports Top 10 MMA Pound for Pound Rankings, the voting for which is done by a panel that includes many luminaries of the MMA journalism community and also, for some unknown reason, me.
The latest Yahoo! Sports Top 10 list was released this week (panel voting and publication of the rankings are done monthly) and there are some familiar faces as well as some changes. Anderson Silva maintained his long-time top spot, followed by Jon Jones and then Georges St. Pierre in the number three spot.
Cain Velasquez made it back on to the list after beating Junior Dos Santos in their recent return bout. A number of notable fighters were not eligible for the list because of inactivity (Dominick Cruz, Alistair Overeem) and suspension (Nick Diaz, Overeem again).
Jose Aldo was eligible because he is fighting so close to the end of voting, and he took the number four spot. The rankings may soon get shaken up again after tonight’s UFC 156.
Frankie Edgar drops down to featherweight to try and take out Aldo. Would Aldo get a bump in the rankings by beating a former lightweight champ? Would Edgar skyrocket in the rankings if were to win a championship in a second weight class?
Also, will Overeem justify the media’s crush on him with an impressive fight against BigFoot that will propel him into the Top 10? Check out the full rankings Top 10 after the jump and then let us know your Top 10 in the comments section.