It’s been more than two years in the making, with Sonnen repeatedly criticizing Silva, his fans, and the Brazilian people as an entire population. The No. 1 challenger needed an added security detail when he headed to Brazil, as the fighter himself and UFC received threats.
The rather calm-natured Silva just deflected and ignored most of the statements from Sonnen, until a recent conference call to promote the fight card. During the UFC 148 conference call last week, Silva finally fired back against Sonnen, stating he plans on trying to break every bone in Sonnen’s face (via Bleacher Report).
"I've always believed in answering questions honestly. There's a part of fighting I greatly believe in: it's called respect. I don't manufacture conflict. I'm not saying things to sell a fight. My job is to show up in short pants and a mouthpiece and punch the other guy in the face."
It doesn’t seem like the Brazilians are buying that statement, however, as Sonnen previously insulted Silva, mentioned Silva’s wife, and insulted the entire nation of Brazil (on multiple occasions).
“Chael lost class when he said he will slap Anderson’s wife on the ass. If someone say this about my wife, where we meet in this life, I’ll bit the unfortunate who said it. So I am against this type of provocation. I hope no one ever do this to me, because the thing will go in a completely wrong direction.”
“The guy’s disrespectful. The way he advertises himself is a wrong way of advertising, it’s disrespectful. He does those warm fights. He’s a tough fighter, a super athlete, but his kind of fight doesn’t sell, doesn’t convince, he’s not a dangerous striker nor a submitter. Where he gets his popularity from? Talking.
"He’s a guy who says bad things about countries, the athlete, Anderson’s wife, the way he dresses…He gets into things that doesn’t matter. If he said he was going to beat Anderson and explained how I guess it was ok, but he gets into personal stuff and that’s a mistake. Anderson did good on responding to him.”
It’s clear that Sonnen does enter a WWE-type of self-promotion when it comes to fighting Silva—but disrespect aside, he’s dramatically helped build up a fight outside of the hardcore fan base. The Brazilian population doesn’t need to like his antics, as it’ll be up to Silva to settle the score and try to violently finish the Team Quest fighter this weekend.
All talking will stop when Silva and Sonnen both enter the cage during the main event of UFC 148 in just five days.