Lyoto Machida Opens Door On Anderson Silva UFC Fight

November 21, 2013 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts

Anderson Silva has said numerous times that he would never fight Lyoto Machida. Silva often calls Machida a brother. Apparently his brother never got the memo because the former UFC champion isn’t ready to close the door on a potential.

The Super Fight has eluded the UFC for years. Dana White’s inability to sign cash bonanzas like GSP vs. Silva and/or Silva vs. Jon Jones has left the UFC without that historic epic big fight. Fortunately or unfortunately there is one big fight left on the table. It is certainly telling that this is what the epic fight has come down to in 2013.

Lyoto Machida stunned the MMA world when he moved to middleweight several weeks ago. Machida made an immediate impact, quickly disposing of his friend Mark Munoz in his 185 debut. It didn’t take long for the Silva vs. Machida questions to start. Up until now that fight has been off the table. While not confirming anything, the Dragon said enough recently when he kept the door open on the big 185 showdown.

Machida was asked recently about fighting his training partner and close friend Anderson Silva. Machida surprisingly said he’d consider it when the time is right.

“I don’t want this fight,” Machida said. “We’re close, and we have the same manager. He’s fighting for the belt, and I’m still far from it. It’s hard to talk about it now. I don’t know if we will cross paths one day. Let’s let things happen and decide what to do. You have to be prepared to face to situation. You have to talk about it.”

This is a much different sentiment than what Silva has conveyed whenever he has been asked about the fight. The talk first started a few years ago when Machida ran through Rashad Evans for the UFC light heavyweight title beginning what Joe Rogan called “the Machida era.” Silva immediately squashed any talk about a potential dream fight at the time. Even as recently, Silva said that the match is not only off limits, he’d retire before he’d fight his friend.

“Jacare is a guy that has been doing a great job and can earn a title shot,” Silva said. “Lyoto is a close friend, a great athlete, and we train together, just like Jacare (Souza).”

“If we get to a point where we’d have to fight, I’d even give up the title.”

Obviously these two aren’t on the same page. I always wondered why someone like Machida would even bother moving to 185 if his end-goal wasn’t to win the title, Silva being champion or not. I thought the second Machida dropped to middleweight that he would fight if Silva if presented the opportunity.

MMA is a weird sport. You see friends and even family members compete against each other all of the time at the highest levels of sport from football to basketball to baseball, etc. Yet in MMA, a sport where these guys spar together all of the time, they refuse to fight each other, sacrificing business and money in the name of friendship. Honorable yes but I just never understood that.

Fortunately for both of these guys they may not have to worry about it if Silva can’t get past Chris Weidman in December.

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The Fate Of UFC In 2014 Rests On Anderson Silva

November 18, 2013 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts

The UFC is in trouble. If you don’t think the UFC is in trouble than check out UFC president Dana White’s press conference after 167. Ironically it now appears the success of the UFC in 2014 will not be decided until the final fight of the year at UFC 168.

The roof started to collapse following Georges St. Pierre’s controversial win at 167 over Johny Hendricks. GSP squeaked out a controversial decision and followed up his win with an even bigger shocker. The champ announced he was taking an indefinite leave of absence due to personal issues. While he didn’t retire, he did announce that he wouldn’t fight for a while.

Dana White was not happy! At the post-fight press conference White went off on the champion. White more or less said that GSP owed it to the company to stick around and isn’t ready to let the champ just walk away.

He didn’t say he was going to retire. He said I’m going to take some time off. You don’t just say, hey I’m going to take some time off, maybe I’ll be back, maybe I won’t. You owe it to the fans, you owe it to that belt, you owe it to this company, and you owe it to Johny Hendricks to give him that opportunity to fight again, unless you’re going to retire.

There’s no I’m going to take a hiatus, I’m going to take a leave of absence, whatever it was he was saying, that’s not how it works.

Why is this such a big deal? Certainly a company as large as the UFC can survive without one player, albeit his most successful world champion right? Maybe, but December 28 could spell the beginning of a deep descent for a company that Dana White has compared to the NFL.

The future of the UFC rests in the hands of Anderson Silva. Anderson Silva will get his rematch with Chris Weidman. If Silva loses there is a huge chance that the G.O.A.T. will announce his retirement. GSP’s hiatus may have precipitated this and the UFC is completely screwed going into 2014 without its two big stars.

Why would Anderson Silva not retire if he loses to Weidman? He has plenty of money and has cemented his MMA legacy over the last several years. The only reason for Silva to stick around would be a potential Super Fight with GSP. With GSP out of the picture there is nothing left for Silva to do without a title to defend. The Jon Jones fight isn’t happening and without a money fight on the table, I predict (and I believe that the UFC thinks this as well) that Silva will retire.

Now what would happen o the UFC without either guy? There is nobody even remotely close to filling Silva and/or GSP’s shoes as a draw. Jon Jones is a star but is nowhere close to the pay per view draw that Silva or GSP are. Maybe if he is seen as the top star without GSP and Silva it helps him as a draw? A UFC calendar in 2014 without Silva and GSP is a pretty dismal calendar when you look at predicting buyrates.

Dana White may think that GSP owes the UFC but he owes them nothing. In my mind he paid back the UFC by accepting a fight with Nick Diaz that he had no business accepting. Georges has given the UFC everything he has had for the last five years as champion so the idea that he owes the company anything is selfish and just foolish.

I don’t know what will happen with Georges. Whether he fights again or not in 2014 will become a much larger story if Anderson Silva joins him on the sidelines following UFC 168. Talk about huge stakes and a lot of negotiating power for Anderson Silva. How ironic that these roads always lead back to the Spider?

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Anderson Silva Thinks UFC Super Fights Are Ridiculous

September 19, 2013 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts

No matter how often Dana White says Anderson Silva is taking a super fight, it isn’t happening. Not only is Silva focusing in on the middleweight division, he thinks the entire concept of a super fight is ridiculous.

I know Silva is polarizing and there are a lot of hardcore MMA fans that don’t like him but I have to be honest. I wanted to stand up and applaud when I read what he said about taking super fights. Silva was recently asked about it and he said everything that I and other super fight critics have been thinking since day one.

“My opinion – the people always say ‘superfight, superfight’ but where are the chances for the new guys to come?

“I’m ready for fight for Jon Jones, Georges St Pierre but in my academy, Minatouro, Glover and the other fighters in this class for Jon Jones. George St Pierre is a different class. I have my problems in my class.

“Yeah it’s good for business but is no good for the other’s guy fight. I go to fight Georges St Pierre, he cuts up, I cut down. I finish the fight. I go to fight Jon Jones, I finish the fight. Who’s next? No have! My opinion, this is perfect bullsh*t.”

Bravo! I have been blogging those same exact sentiments since the first GSP vs. Silva fight was proposed in 2010. I thought the idea of super fights, taking guys from different weight classes, specifically champions, and matching them up against guys outside of the division benefits nobody other than Zuffa’s pockets. Silva agrees.

What makes these comments even more devastating to Dana’s grand plan is that Silva is the super fight. Let’s be honest. Take Silva out of the super fight equation and what do you have? Maybe Jon Jones vs. Cain Velasquez? Silva holds the key to the super fights and without him there are none that would come even close to bringing in the attention the UFC would be seeking.

Now let’s call a spade a spade here. Silva is also a brilliant negotiator. Silva has been on and off the fence when it comes to super fights. Silva could be using this as simply a negotiation tactic. Who could blame him? You have Dana White out there saying these fights are “definitely” going to happen when his star fighter says they aren’t. Who is losing more money on these fights?

The other thing that Silva points out is how unfair these fights are to the other guys in the division. Champions fight on an average of twice a year, three times on rare occasion. Now you want to take a champion out of the division for a fight and make a guys wait who have fought hard to earn their place in line. I’d also imagine that it would take longer for someone moving up in weight to prepare for the fight and come back down to weight. Depending upon how much damage the champion takes in the fight you could go a full year without a title defense. It’s just not fair.

Once again I think the idea of these super fights is ridiculous. These are the greatest fighters in the world in their weight class. This is a sport and there are weight classes for a reason. Taking a guy out of his weight class and putting him in a mismatch against another great fighter won’t be entertaining for anyone. It’s about time someone called it what it what truly was and that’s bullsh*t!

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Anderson Silva Says He Was Out Of Control At UFC 162

August 12, 2013 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, Videos

The MMA world is still talking about Chris Weidman’s upset over Anderson Silva at UFC 162 and that includes the former champion. Silva has been candid with the media about the loss and in a new interview admits he lost control going into the second round.

While Weidman’s win over Silva is hardly the biggest upset in UFC history, it is still one of those fights that will be talked about forever. Did The Spider lose the fight because Weidman was the better fighter or did Silva beat himself? If you ask Anderson, he beat himself.

Silva was a guest on a recent talk show in Brazil where he discussed the fight. Silva opened up to host Danilo Gentili about his mindset and lack of focus in the fight and what his biggest mistakes were on that infamous night in Las Vegas.

Unfortunately, it was a mistake and I paid a high price for it. It was a technical mistake, but it shouldn’t have happened…but happened. The truth is…the charge that people put on me due to my previous performances was tremendous. So…in this way when you make a mistake people just don’t understand. It was an unintentional thing. I’ve never said that I was the best in the world or that I was unbeatable.

I stood with my legs parallel when I had to do a step back instead to dodge the punch that KO’d me. Anyways, it was a sequence of events that led me to what happened. All the pre-fight tension and that feeling that makes you want to explode during the fight…During the round breaks, I always go back to my corner. But this time, I didn’t come back to my cornermen.

I came back to argue with Weidman, asking him to keep the fight on the feet, saying, ‘let’s strike, let’s give a good show,’ when actually I needed to come back to my corner, to get some instructions. I shouldn’t have been there, discussing with Weidman. I should have calmed down to receive the instructions in order to do the right things in the second round. And I didn’t do that. So I think I was out of control, lost my temper a little bit.

What I really liked about this interview is that Silva actually went into detail about the technique and what he should have done as opposed to what he was doing. This also brings up the argument as to whether Silva was goofing around or not. If you listen to Silva here it sounds like his goofing around as some characterize it was actually strategy. His strategy though and not his corner’s.

It is amazing to me that someone as great as Silva was able to lose focus so easily. Take the first fight with Chael Sonnen at UFC 117 for example. Silva remained focused and disciplined for the entire fight, even in the face of being dominated, a more challenging situation I would think than what Weidman was accomplishing. Yet it only took a round to break Silva’s focus and lure him into making a critical mistake. That is the kind of explanation I’d expect to hear from a rookie fighter, not a legend.

Regardless I can’t wait to see what kind of strategy Silva brings with him to the rematch. Can he remain disciplined and focused? If he can’t, he is in for a rude awakening.

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Anderson Silva Vs. Chris Weidman Rematch Set For UFC 168

July 13, 2013 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, Videos

It hasn’t even been a week since Chris Weidman stunned Anderson Silva at UFC 162 and the UFC has wasted no time in signing a rematch. UFC president Dana White made it official on ESPN and announced Weidman vs. SIlva II is ready to go for UFC 168.

I have to give the UFC a lot of credit here as they wasted no time in capitalizing on the momentum of the fight. I can tell you as the owner of a MMA/WWE blog that my website has been on fire all week thanks to UFC 162 related traffic.

The rematch being signed is not exactly surprising as White insisted immediately after the fight that the rematch would be signed. It was a matter of when as there were all kinds of rumors about Super Bowl weekend but in the end the fight was added to UFC 168 in Las Vegas, NV.

Dana White made the announcement live on ESPN Sportscenter. I found it curious that ESPN got the scoop considering how much White has criticized ESPN over the years. On top of that the UFC has a partnership with Fox. I would have assumed that one of the Fox outlets would get the scoop over ESPN. It will be even more interesting to see how similar situations play out like this in the future once Fox Sports 1 is live.

I think this is a real true test to see exactly where the UFC is at in 2013. White is calling this the biggest rematch in UFC history but that honor currently belongs to Brock Lesnar vs. Frank Mir with 1.6 million. No fight has come close in recent years to eclipsing their pay per view numbers. I would think that anything under a million buys would have to be considered a huge disappointment while beating the UFC 100 buyrate would be an absolute game changer for the promotion.

Silva is already a favorite on the sports books going into the rematch. Opinions on the first fight are as mixed as you get depending upon who you were pulling for in the fight. Personally I think Weidman got lucky and was on his way to a rough night if he didn’t land the punch. Many others think that Weidman had Silva’s number at the bell. It is interesting to see that the gamblers aren’t buying Weidman and believe that Silva is still the better fighter.

The fight will co-headline along with Miesha Tate vs. Ronda Rousey. Ironically there were rumblings that Silva and Rousey were going to co-headline UFC 162 with the idea that the UFC would sell it on the best male and female fighters in the world. I am still not fully on board the Rousey hype machine but together, the UFC is probably not going to have two bigger stars than Silva and Rousey on the same card for a long time. The numbers should be pretty good regardless.

I am very excited to see what kind of Silva shows up for the fight. Everyone expects a more serious Silva to show up at UFC 168 but it would not surprise me at all to see the same charades played by the former champion. As much as everyone loves to criticize him now for his plan that same game plan helped him successfully defend the UFC middleweight title ten times. The plan seemed to work at first and took Weidman out of his ground game. It will be really curious to see what kind of attack Silva is going to try and bring to Weidman at 168.

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Emotional Anderson Silva UFC 162 Video Blog

July 12, 2013 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, Videos

It was easy to watch Anderson Silva at UFC 162 and criticize his arrogance but there is a side of him UFC fans have never seen until now. Silva posted a dramatic video blog on his YouTube channel which shows The Spider humbled and devastated after his KO loss at the hands of Chris Weidman.

Anderson Silva has projected himself to be a confident and at times arrogant fighter over the course of his UFC tenure. Fans are used to seeing Silva taunt his opponents and make what some call a mockery out of his fights. Yet what we finally see here in this video is a guy that is human and a man that takes his sport and profession much more serious than he has ever let on.

The video blog is fantastic and kudos to Silva for posting it and allowing us to get a glimpse into his emotions following the loss of the UFC middleweight title to Chris Weidman. The video first shows celebrities Usher and Roy Jones Jr. consoling Silva who seems fairly stonewalled during the conversations. It is after the UFC presser that Silva finally breaks down in an emotional scene in which he cries while he is thanking his team.

One thing I found really interesting here was a piece of the UFC post 162 presser in which Weidman and Silva talk about the fight. Silva says that all he was trying to do was induce Weidman to fight his fight which while it seems obvious often gets confused for showboating. Weidman says he didn’t take it as disrespect although he said much different during the fight. What is funny is that Dana White says if Silva would have won everyone would have said how smart he was. I laughed because when Silva first started playing games I tweeted that it was “brilliant” because he took Weidman out of his game plan. It certainly didn’t turn out so brilliant.

Check out the video which brings a brand new dynamic to the story. I guarantee that you’ll see plenty of these clips played in the promos leading up to the rematch and rightfully so. You can also understand the mix of emotions Silva felt in changing his mind on a rematch when you see how crushed he was during the aftermath.

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UFC 162 Conspiracy Theories Are A Joke

July 11, 2013 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts

I love a good conspiracy theory and as a pro wrestling fan, I really love a good work but the idea that anyone would call Chris Weidman’s UFC 162 win over Anderson Silva a fix or a work is about the most preposterous thing I’ve ever heard.

It wasn’t soon after Weidman stunned the MMA world with his second round knockout of the greatest fighter of all-time that skeptics started raising their voices or in this case running to the keyboard. MMA and sports forums immediately saw a barrage of fans telling the world that the win was nothing more than a big fix. Every post was dumber than the next.

What may have even been dumber than these posts was seeing major sports media outlets pick up the story and give it legs. The worst of the bunch may have been Sports Illustrated, a site which has been very generous in promoting my blog in the past gave this ridiculous idea three minutes on with a “debate” about whether it was a fix or not.

I don’t know what was worse. Realizing within about three seconds that most of these people never even watched the fight or hearing the moderator constantly refer to the new champion as Chris Weedman.

As I said above, I love a good work. There is still a part of me that believes the Montreal Screwjob was a work, although we can debate that another time. As much as I would love to see a conspiracy uncovered it just isn’t going to happen. Anyone that knows anything about MMA would never be foolish enough to suggest that anything about Silva’s loss was fixed. Dumb yes, fixed no.

Or as Dana White says, “Yeah, the fix is in, you (expletive) idiots.”

Let’s take a look at the big picture here. Why in the world would anyone pick to fix this Silva fight? He had huge money fights on the table with either Jon Jones or Georges St-Pierre. Some say that the Chris Weidman rematch will be bigger but I completely disagree. To the casual fans, the general public, Silva vs. J.J. or GSP is much bigger. Taking a dive now not only delays those fights but even if they do make the matches, neither fight will be the same with Silva losing. They’ll be just as big but it won’t have that same zest.
The other question is why Weidman? Step back for a second and look at Silva’s last few fights. If Silva was ever going to take a dive in order to cash in on a rematch it would have been against either Chael Sonnen or Stephan Bonnar, with Bonnar being the obvious pick. A Bonnar-Silva rematch with Bonnar pulling the unthinkable upset would have been enormous money. A Sonnen-Silva third fight would have had a chance of beating UFC 100 numbers. If this was all about the money Weidman would be the last choice.

The argument in UFC’s case would be that Bonnar and Sonnen are at the end of their careers (Bonnar’s is over) and putting Weidman over creates a new star. Yeah, I am sure that is exactly what motivates Anderson Silva, creating the UFC’s next star. The motivation here would have been money and the bigger money was with Sonnen or Bonnar.

Speaking of money there are also those nice endorsements that Silva has outside of the UFC. Would Silva really risk taking a dive when he has deals with Burger King and Nike? If it ever came out that he faked a fight he’d be dropped immediately from them and anyone else. Silva is also looking to set up a movie career once he is done with the UFC. There is just way too much on the line.

Don’t get me wrong. As a pro wrestling fan and someone who worked in the business for a long time I have always wondered why a UFC champion wouldn’t take a dive for a big money rematch. Silva isn’t that guy and this isn’t that fight and any talk whatsoever giving this theory any credence is completely misguided and a little irresponsible.

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Anderson Silva Wants Chris Weidman UFC Rematch This Year

July 10, 2013 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts

Anderson Silva has never been known for his consistency. Just a few days after telling the UFC world that he wasn’t interested in fighting Chris Weidman not only does he want to Weidman, he wants to fight him…this year!

I think that there have been more rumors about this match in a few days than there have been about GSP vs. Silva in the last three years. First Silva didn’t want the fight, than reports indicated that the UFC was attempting to book the fight on Super Bowl weekend, than Dana White said UFC 168, and now one report is saying that Silva wanted to fight Weidman again the next day. and UFC Tonight reporter Ariel Helwani reports that Silva wants the rematch this year. Helwani also reports that a source told him, “They have never seen Silva so motivated to fight someone, and that a little over 24 hours after the loss Silva was jokingly wishing the rematch could happen this week.”

Dave Meltzer reported immediately after the fight that the UFC president was looking at putting the fight on the Super Bowl weekend card which would be in Weidman’s market. Meltzer later reported that White had changed his mind thinking that while he would have all of the media in town, all of the media coverage would go to the Super Bowl.

There were also reports that White considered moving the Ronda Rousey vs. Miesha Tate fight to the Super Bowl weekend show and replacing the UFC 168 headliner with Weidman vs. Silva II. My gut tells me that White wouldn’t want Rousey overshadowed by Silva and that he will do the best he can to stay away from putting them on the same card. There is certainly an advantage to exposing her to what could be the biggest audience in UFC history so who knows.

I think one thing is crystal clear here. The UFC and Silva’s team know that they are looking at one of the biggest fights in UFC history. I don’t know in this current climate of MMA if anything is going to break the records set by Brock Lesnar vs. Frank Mir at UFC 100. It’s just a different time and Silva and Weidman aren’t the talkers that Lesnar and Mir are. If any fight was going to break it Silva vs. Sonnen II would have but it didn’t even come close.

I like the fact that the UFC is keeping this fight alive with new rumors leaked daily about the rematch. Silva is suspended for 45-days from contact so it isn’t as if the fight will come before the end of the year. Silva’s desire to fight again so fast is certainly a far cry from the Silva who has taken a year between big fights in the past (other than the exception last year of the Bonnar fight) and I for one like it.

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Jon Jones thinks Anderson Silva “Abused His Gift By Disrespecting” Weidman

July 09, 2013 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, Videos

It will be awhile before UFC media can move on from the UFC 162 and the way Anderson Silva lost. That is why it wasn’t a surprise to hear the topic asked to Jon Jones often during Tuesday’s UFC 165 press conference and Bones offered an interesting take on the downfall of the Spider.

It is always interesting hearing other fighters talk about the Anderson Silva vs. Chris Weidman upset. While all are congratulating Weidman, many are disappointed in Silva and his antics during the fight. Like him or not Jon Jones has always tried to come off as a respectful professional so it was interesting to hear his thoughts on seeing a potential opponent KO’d under fascinating circumstances.

Jones was asked about the finish of the fight and the UFC light heavyweight champion would like to remind everyone that he has no intentions of ever purposely letting his hands down.

“It motivates me a lot to watch somebody who I look up to like that lose. It was a reality check. I try to keep my ego in check when it comes to the fight game. Watching Anderson lose like that, first of all is something I would never do put my hands down and fight like that. Seeing Chris Weidman’s dream come true, it motivates me to be a dream crusher.”

Jones was also asked about the burden of being champion. Silva talked about the burden of being champion after losing but this champion doesn’t see holding the title as a burden at all.

“I don’t let myself feel the burden of being a champion. There’s things that Matt Hughes has done, Georges St. Pierre has done. I don’t own so many records. I have no right to be complacent. I’m still young. I feel like I’m at the beginning of my journey. I’m learning to deal with media.”

Jones still has a lot of respect for Silva but he thinks that the reason Silva lost may have been more than just Chris Weidman catching him with his hands down…it was the War Gods that got him.

“I think Anderson Silva is a magnificent fighter. He abused his gift by disrespecting his opponent. He lost sight of that and paid the ultimate price for it. I’m not over the Anderson Silva fight train. He was fighting at a masterful level and he got disrespectful and the wargods made him pay for it. He’s still the best in my book.”

Jones is being very diplomatic here yet at the same time someone as sensitive as Silva is to fighter criticism may see his words as fighting words. GSP simply picked Weidman to beat him and Anderson immediately started mocking him. I am real curious to see if Silva uses these words to fuel a verbal assault of his own against Jon Jones once he starts doing media again for his next fight.

I am sure it was also nice to do a press conference for the first time in a year where Jones wasn’t asked about looking ahead to Anderson Silva.

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Anderson Silva Vs. Chris Weidman Rematch Targeted For UFC 168

July 08, 2013 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts

As the MMA world continues to talk about Chris Weidman KO’ing Anderson Silva at UFC 162 the UFC boss is looking ahead to a rematch. Dana White is not only guaranteeing a rematch but is reportedly targeting it for what could be the biggest UFC card of 2014.

Anderson Silva may be saying no but the UFC is saying yes. According to reports, the UFC is not only working hard to sign the rematch between Silva and Weidman, but they are targeting it for February 1, 2014 a day before Super Bowl XLVIII in the same city.

A UFC event on Super Bowl weekend has become an annual show but this year is much different. Rather than taking advantage of the betting traffic in Las Vegas the UFC is coming to the Super Bowl. The UFC will be holding its event just miles away from the Super Bowl one day earlier taking advantage of all of the media in town for the NFL event.

Having an event on that weekend in the same city is a great idea. Having an event on that weekend, in the same city, with what could be the biggest fight in the 20-year history of the UFC is a whole other ballgame. Putting that fight on in that city at that time could be the biggest promotional coup in the legacy of UFC president Dana White.

It seems like an easy plan except for one tiny snag. Anderson Silva doesn’t want a rematch…or at least that is what he is saying. Silva told the world after his knockout that he doesn’t want the burden of the title and has no interest in another reign or rematch. Is he sincere or is this just a brilliant negotiation from The Spider? Dana White thinks it’s neither and believes that the former champion will change his mind once he settles down from the loss.

Anderson Silva needs to go home, hang out with his family, take a week or two to shake this thing off,” White said following Saturday’s post-UFC 162 press conference. “There are times when guys will win a fight, and they don’t want to talk for three weeks. It’s really part of the process, it really is, and especially a big night like tonight. And when you lose the way that he lost, there’s a process for this.

White believes that Silva will want redemption.

Anderson plays a lot of things off publicly,” White said. “The guy went on this win streak because he’s an amazing competitor and is an amazing talent. He’s going to want to redeem himself.

It’s a dangerous game that the UFC president is playing here. He’s played this game before where he promises fights at the same time the fighters say they don’t want the fight and he seems to always come up short in the end. Insisting that this rematch is taking place in the face of Silva saying he doesn’t want it may be another case of egg on his face.

It’s bigger than the money for the UFC but don’t get me wrong, it’s about the money. This rematch is already predicted to be the biggest rematch in UFC history. Early estimates are 800,000 buys for the first fight. Most analysts predict that a Silva vs. Weidman rematch will break the 1,600,000 buyrate set at UFC 100. Until it does it cannot be considered the biggest rematch in UFC history no matter what anyone tells you.

I think it’s even bigger than that. There is a great majority of fans and media that believe Silva beat himself with his arrogance at UFC 162. The UFC needs Chris Weidman to beat Silva at his best to shake the monkey off of his back.

Until that happens there will always be this exclamation point of sorts on Weidman as UFC middleweight champion. It really is important for the legacy of the UFC and the title for this rematch to happen.

Update: Hours after publishing this story Lance Pugmire of the L.A. Times tweeted that Dana White told him that he is working on getting the rematch signed for UFC 168 on December 28. My hunch is that Dana has something else already in the works for the UFC Super Bowl weekend show because I have no idea why he wouldn’t want this fight there. The fight would co-headline with Ronda Rousey vs. Miesha Tate. It should be pointed out that the original plan I saw reported for UFC 162 was for Rousey to fight underneath and promote the event as the best male and female MMA fighters in the world.

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