When UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva (33-4 MMA, 16-0 UFC) steps in to the cage at UFC 162, it will be the first appearance of a massive 10-fight deal. Will Silva actually fight 10 more times? The champ said he doesn’t know, especially since he only asked for a four-fight contract.
“Maybe there’s a contradiction lost in translation,” Silva told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) through an interpreter. “I wanted to do four more fights, and they said eight, so I said, ‘Whatever. Let’s do eight, 10. Let’s do however many fights you want.’ They got on that ride and offered me 10 fights, and that’s what I signed.”
Silva’s claim stands in a bit of contrast to UFC President Dana White’s recollection of the pair’s latest contract talks. According to White, it was Silva who directly requested the lengthy deal despite recently turning 38 years old.
The UFC boss and the best fighter in company history have seemed to find themselves on different wavelengths in recent months, as witnessed by a series of missed media obligations in May and subsequent claim from the champ that he was completely unaware of the appointments.
Of course, White has often referred to Silva as “an artist,” who likes to send mixed messages in the media in an apparent attempt to entertain himself during the sessions he reportedly doesn’t enjoy.
That said, fans don’t pay to watch Silva give interviews or negotiate contracts. They pay to watch him destroy opponents, which is exactly what he’s done in all but a handful of his 16 UFC appearances. Next up is Chris Weidman (9-0 MMA, 5-0 UFC), who takes on the champ in the headlining bout of UFC 162, which takes place July 6 at Las Vegas’ MGM Grand Garden Arena.
While Silva holds a significant experience edge, the decade-younger Weidman presents a difficult stylistic matchup. Still, Silva is a significant wagering favorite and is expected to win yet again.
If he does, what’s left? A rematch with Vitor Belfort perhaps? Superfights with Georges St-Pierre and/or Jon Jones? In short, what are the chances we actually see “The Spider” fight 10 more times?
“It all depends,” Silva said. “Ten fights is about six years, so we’ll see what happens in the meantime. I hope that I’m still inspired and that I still have the will power and the desire to go out there and fight. But I’m happy.
“I’m well-treated by Dana and Lorenzo (Fertitta) and everyone in the UFC, and I hope to continue having this desire to fight and go in there and train. But it’s a matter of time. We have to go in there and see what’s going to happen in the next few years.”
For the latest on UFC 162, stay tuned to the UFC Rumors section of the site.