Posts Tagged ‘MMA’

One of the greatest fighters in the history of MMA, Anderson “The Spider” Silva, possibly fought his last fight yesterday. At 38 years old, Anderson doesn’t have anything left to prove. The gruesome injury that occurred last night in the 2nd round is not the way anybody wants to end their careers, or for that fact remember Anderson. However, in a sport where you are paid to beat the crap out of the other guy there are worst ways to go out. Even after his latest defeat to up and comer Chris Weidman, Anderson acted as if he wanted to take a break away from the sport. Instead, he came back just six months later to fight the only man to defeat him inside the octagon. 

Anderson was a professional MMA fighter for 11 years before heading into the UFC at 31. In his second fight in the UFC, Anderson defeated Rich Franklin for the Middleweight title in 2006. There was little exposure to Anderson’s career prior to entering the UFC; only hardcore fans knew of the skills Anderson possessed. UFC fans witnessed a sampling of his greatness in his quick work of Chris Leben.

Anderson VS Carlos Newton in his PRIDE days

At the time, Franklin was the beloved champion and I remember watching the two Anderson/Franklin fights rooting for Rich even though he was helpless against Silva.  That is the feeling most fans had when they rooted against Silva, a feeling of hopelessness. Anderson made all the great fighters around him look like amateurs. He did things that were completely against the fundamentals of fighting, but it never mattered because he was so great.

Their first full fight video is below:

Anderson Silva VS Rich Franklin

You can see the pure joy in Anderson’s face after winning the title. He had reached the peak of his sport after 11 years of grinding, fighting around the world and completely dedicating himself to mixed martial arts. He still refers to Franklin as one of the best fighters he has ever defeated. Anderson won an astounding 17 straight fights in the UFC, and most of them were title defenses. At some points it seemed like Anderson was bored with his competition. Fighters didn’t want to engage Silva on their feet because they knew he had superior striking. They thought their only chance was to take him to the ground, which was correct if they were able to avoid being submitted.

Silva won every way possible throughout his career. He even took his talents to the Light Heavyweight Division where he embarrassed the competition.

Silva Vs Irwin

Silva Vs Griffin

Silva Vs Bonnar

He often toyed around with his opponent until he wanted to finish the fight. Some viewed this as a sign of arrogance, while others thought he was just trying to entertain the crowd.

Silva Vs Belfort

His trademark of bobbing and weaving, infuriating his opponents while he continues to dodge punches like Neo, would eventually be his demise.

Anderson was dedicated in his comeback attempt to take back his belt, and this fight seemed to matter to him. The last time that happened was in a rematch against Chael Sonnen in which Silva completely dominated him. However, Anderson’s body prevented him from getting the redemption he so badly wanted. The next gif is pretty brutal to watch, nobody deserves this:

This is not the way Anderson will be remembered in my eyes. Anderson Silva will go down as one of the greatest of all time, and deserves a spot on the hypothetical Mount Rushmore of MMA. He was a pure entertainer at heart, a big kid who just so happened to be the baddest man on the planet.

Potential super fights against Jon “Bones” Jones and Georges St. Pierre will most likely never happen and that’s OK. Anderson doesn’t owe the fans or the sport anything. He was the Middleweight Champion for SEVEN straight years and fought anybody Dana White threw his way. As nice as it would be to see Silva mount a comeback and regain his belt, that is an unrealistic expectation of the fans. Let’s enjoy all of the great fights and years Anderson gave to the sport, as the Dominique Wilkins of MMA.

Thank you for all of the memories, Anderson.

Randall “Stiltz”