Anderson Silva is the former UFC middleweight champion, setting a record for most consecutive title defenses for several years before being defeated by Chris Weidman. He was once considered one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the world, alongside B.J. Penn, Georges St. Pierre and Fedor Emelianenko.
The Twilight of Silva's Middleweight Reign - Sonnen, Vitor, Okami and the slaughter of BonnarEdit
He most recently got his ass kicked for four and a half rounds against Chael Sonnen before 'submitting' him via a triangle choke. He was next set to fight an immediate rematch against Sonnen and deservedly so. Unfortunately, Sonnen tested positive for steroids after the first fight before the planned second fight could be officially confirmed.Silva instead defended his title against former light-heavyweight champion Vitor Belfort. He knocked Belfort out in the first round with a record highlight-reel front kick to the face. Silva attributed the instantly legendary strike to his tutelage under Hollywood star and -- for lack of a better term, unfortunately -- martial arts guru Steven Seagal.
He next defended his title in a rematch against Yushin Okami, defeating Okami via second-round TKO to retain the belt and erase his only loss -- and a controversial one at that -- in five years. In the eyes of many fans, this put Silva above Georges St. Pierre as the number one fighter in the world pound-for-pound.
Silva was sidelined after the bout with an injury, allowing him to smoothly avoid a rematch against Chael Sonnen. He was rumored to move back up to light-heavyweight for the third time since 2009, midway through 2012 for an in-demand superfight against current light-heavyweight champion Jon Jones.
After recovering from his injury, Silva next defended his title for the eleventh time in a rematch against Chael Sonnen, losing the first round to Sonnen in similar fashion before TKOing Sonnen in the second round.
Silva then stepped in on short notice at 205 pounds against fellow short-notice volunteer Stephan Bonnar to save the main event of UFC 153 in his native Brazil. Silva TKOed Bonnar near the end of the first round with a huge knee; it was the first time Bonnar had been finished in his carer and he retired after the loss.
Rumors abounded about Silva's next fight. There were possibilities of a superfight against UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre or UFC light-heavyweight champion Jon Jones; meanwhile, middleweight contenders like Chris Weidman, Michael Bisping, Tim Boetsch and Vitor Belfort waited in the wings back home at 185 pounds.
As of February 2013 - three or four months after Silva's last fight -- Silva's next reasonable opponents include title defenses against Chris Weidman, former UFC light-heavyweight champion Rashad Evans, a rematch against Vitor Belfort or Strikeforce middleweight champion Luke Rockhold.
After Rashad Evans lost to Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, Chris Weidman called out Silva directly even as a high-profile match between Luke Rockhold and Vitor Belfort was made. Silva tried to duck both of these possible contenders by talking only about a superfight against Georges St. Pierre at welterweight.
Losing The TitleEdit
Silva was announced in late February 2013 to be lined up for a title defense against Chris Weidman in summer 2013. Weidman knocked Silva out in the second round to take the middleweight championship and breaking Silva's undefeated phenomenal streak.
Silva was scheduled for a rematch in December 2013 before being injured in August 2013. He soon recovered and the fight was scheduled again for December 2013.
Weidman once again dominated the fight's first round and Silva came out as he did in their first fight's second stanza: desperate and looking to make something happen. He started trying to work in some leg kicks which had shown promise in the first fight. Weidman had been obviously training to defend them as he checked one of the powerful kicks and shattered Silva's left shin in two places in a stunning and tragic injury. The injury ended the fight and more than likely it also ended Silva's career.
Silva reportedly asked surgeons in pre-op when he could train again and after the successful surgery the prognosis from the surgeons was six to nine months. Silva would be nearly forty when he could realistically come back from the injury and it wasn't very realistic even then. Ring rust would be a huge factor.
Silva signed in July 2014, a little over half a year after the injury, to fight former Strikeforce welterweight champion Nick Diaz in January 2015 which would be over a year after the injury. Silva defeated Diaz via a lackluster unanimous decision, before testing positive for steroids after the fight. Diaz tested positive for marijuana. Both men were suspended although for some reason Silva wasn't suspended as long...
In any case once Silva had come back from his suspension he fought contender Michael Bisping in Bisping's homeland of London. Bisping won a controversial but entertaining unanimous decision over Silva.
Silva was next set to fight exciting striker Uriah Hall in Brazil but unfortunately he was forced to pull out after the revelation that he would need gallbladder surgery immediately. Silva stated that he wanted to get on the iconic UFC 200 card in July 2016 but the timetable and list of opponents did not seem to come together.
UFC 200: Stepping Up To Fight Edit
Three days before the event headliner Jon Jones tested positive for PEDs and was pulled from his fight with UFC light-heavyweight champion Dan Cormier. Silva offered to step in on two days' notice to fight Cormier and the UFC accepted, setting up the fight as a three-round light-heavyweight fight on the landmark event.
- Luiz Azeredo vs. Anderson Silva
- Anderson Silva vs. Jose Barreto - The fight was only Silva's second mixed martial arts fight.
- Anderson Silva vs. Claudionor Fontinelle - Silva had an extensive height advantage.
- Anderson Silva vs. Tetsuji Kato
- Anderson Silva vs. Hayato Sakurai - The fight was for the Shooto middleweight (170) title with Hayato Sakurai defending, and it was Sakurai's first loss. It was only
Silva's sixth MMA fight. Silva called it the toughest fight of his career even years later.
- Anderson Silva vs. Roan Carneiro - The fight was Roan Carneiro's second mixed martial arts fight and his second loss.
- Anderson Silva vs. Alexander Otsuka
- Anderson Silva vs. Daiju Takase - Daiju Takase won with the upset via triangle choke.
- Anderson Silva vs. Jeremy Horn
- Anderson Silva vs. Lee Murray - The fight was for the vacant Cage Rage middleweight title. It was Lee Murray's last MMA fight since 2004, as he was forced to unofficially retire after injuries resulting from a stabbing.
- Anderson Silva vs. Jorge Rivera - The fight was for the Cage Rage middleweight title with Silva defending.
- Anderson Silva vs. Curtis Stout - The fight was for the Cage Rage World middleweight title with Silva defending.
- Anderson Silva vs. Yushin Okami 1 - The fight was in the opening round of the Rumble on the Rock 2006 welterweight tournament. Anderson Silva landed an upkick from the bottom as Yushin Okami had both knees down. Okami was awarded the victory via disqualification.
- Anderson Silva vs. Tony Fryklund - The fight was for the Cage Rage middleweight championship with Silva defending.
- Anderson Silva vs. Rich Franklin 1 - The fight was for Franklin's middleweight title. Silva brutally utilized knees from the Muay Thai clinch to the face of Franklin, breaking his nose and knocking him unconscious to win the belt.
- Anderson Silva vs. Travis Lutter - The fight was originally supposed to be for the UFC middleweight title but Travis Lutter did not make weight.
- Anderson Silva vs. Nate Marquardt - The fight was for the middleweight title with Silva defending.
- Anderson Silva vs. Rich Franklin 2 - This time, Silva was defending the middleweight title against former champion Franklin. Franklin did slightly better the second time around, making it to round two before succumbing to more knees and punches to hand Silva the victory by technical knockout.
- Anderson Silva vs. Dan Henderson - The fight was a unification of the Pride welterweight (185 lbs.) belt -- defended by Henderson -- and the UFC middleweight (185 lbs.) belt, defended by Silva. The fight was a back-and-forth war ending with Silva choking out a fading Henderson with a rear-naked choke as ten seconds remained in the second round.
- Anderson Silva vs. Patrick Cote - The fight was for Silva's UFC middleweight championship, but Cote suffered an injury at the beginning of the third round and he was forced to forfeit. He gave a good fight, however.
- Anderson Silva vs. Thales Leites - The fight was for the middleweight title, and it was notorious as one of the most hated, boring fights in UFC history.
- Chael Sonnen vs. Anderson Silva 1 - The fight was for the UFC middleweight title with Silva defending. Chael Sonnen beat Silva for four and a half rounds dominantly before Silva locked up a controversial triangle choke in the last two minutes of a fight that was heading to a decision that Sonnen had on lockdown.
- Anderson Silva vs. Vitor Belfort - The fight was for the middleweight title with Silva defending. It was the first time Vitor Belfort had been knocked unconscious.
- Anderson Silva vs. Yushin Okami 2 - The fight was for the UFC middleweight title with Silva defending.
- Anderson Silva vs. Nick Diaz
- Michael Bisping vs. Anderson Silva
- Daniel Cormier vs. Anderson Silva - Anderson Silva stepped in on TWO DAYS' NOTICE to replace the troubled Jon Jones.
During the build-up to his July 2013 defense of his title against Chris Weidman, Anderson Silva stated that his favorite fighters in UFC history were B.J. Penn, Randy Couture, Chuck Liddell and Royce Gracie.