Sports

UFC Champion Anderson Silva Is Playing Games

When UFC signed Anderson Silva to face Forrest Griffin, it was signed to test him. The test took all of three minutes. As UFC middleweight champion, he has beaten every top challenger in the division. He has looked unstoppable. So why all of the sudden is Anderson Silva ducking fights?

The talk immediately began following the Griffin fight about UFC’s next Dream Match. Fans spoke loudly of a Lyoto Machida vs. Anderson Silva light heavyweight title match. Unfortunately the only person not interested in this match is Anderson Silva. Silva said he would never fight Machida citing their close friendship. The news certainly did not make Dana White happy.

This is a typical reason given by many UFC fighters when turning down fights. I really don’t understand it. Friends compete against one another every day in professional and amateur sports. The Klitchko brothers have talked about fighting each other. The Williams sisters compete in tennis. Yet for some reason guys who spar against each other every day in the gym won’t do so in public. It really doesn’t make a lot of sense.

It makes even less sense if you are Anderson Silva. Silva is regarded by some as the best fighter in MMA. One would suspect that a professional athlete at the top of his game would embrace the toughest challenges. Realistically, Silva is the UFC middleweight champion and he doesn’t have to take this match. So why in the world would Silva next turn down the number one challenger in the middleweight division?

It was reported a few weeks ago by Silva’s camp that he was going to sit out until 2010 due to an elbow injury. Reportedly the injury would sideline the champion for awhile. Now reports have surfaced that indicate Silva’s injury is no where near as serious as orginally thought to be. Silva won’t be undergoing surgery as previously reported.  Allegedly Silva won’t need Silva and is healthy enough to fight in November as planned. So much for the injury excuse.

Silva and his camp have publicly stated that they have no interest in a rematch with Dan Henderson right now. After losing to Silva last year, Henderson has gone 3-0 in the division. Dana White rightfully promised Dan Henderson a rematch with Silva after his last win. Anderson Silva has other plans in mind for Dan Henderson which doesn’t include an immediate rematch. Silva wants Hendo to fight Nate Marquardt and then he will face the winner of that match.

Henderson is understandably furious. Why would Henderson risk his title shot and a huge pay day for another fight? Anderson Silva hasn’t defended the title since April. Dana White blasted Fedor Emelianenko for avoiding the best competition and called him a joke for it. Is Anderson Silva now a joke or a “f*cking joke” in White”s words? What is Dana White to do and why has Anderson Silva become such an MMA diva?

Could Silva really be afraid of Dan Henderson? I don’t know what he could possibly be afraid of. Yes, Dan Henderson did win a round against Silva in their previous match. However, Henderson is older and likely slower. I do think Henderson has the tools to beat Silva, but having the tools and using them are two different stories. This seems like such a no-brainer for Silva that I just can’t get my hands around why he is avoiding this fight after shooting down a Machida match.

Silva has publicly said he wants to retire after his UFC deal is up in three more fights. Yet, I have to question whether this is all about posturing for a new deal. He could set himself up for life with a new deal and he’d be a fool not to try and get it. At the same time, I don’t see the need for all of this posturing if this was truly about a new deal.

The bottom line here is that Anderson Silva needs to man up. I don’t know what his angle is, but it is going to get old really fast. Randy Couture tried playing games with UFC in the past and it didn’t work. Silva is either going to have to fight the best or Dana White will sit him home and keep him out of anyone’s ring. As impressive as he was at UFC 101, he will have a hard time convincing people he is the best if he keeps ducking the best.

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Eric G.

Eric is the owner and editor-in-chief of the Camel Clutch Blog. Eric has worked in the pro wrestling industry since 1995 as a ring announcer in ECW and a commentator/host on television, PPV, and home video. Eric also hosted Pro Wrestling Radio on terrestrial radio from 1998-2009. Check out some of Eric's work on his IMDB bio and Wikipedia. Eric has an MBA from Temple University's Fox School of Business.

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Welcome to the Camel Clutch Blog. The CCB was born in 2007 and features blogs from over 50 different writers. Articles from the Camel Clutch Blog have been featured by some of the world's most respected websites including; CNNSI.com, Foxsports.com, Yahoo News, Business Insider, MSNBC, NBCsports.com, and more.

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