Leading up to the official announcement of Anderon Silva vs. Chael Sonnen II, Sonnen flatly denied that the fight was going to take place. Most dismissed this as typical Sonnen mischief, but according to UFC President Dana White, there was some truth to the statements.
"When we did the press conference down in Brazil, Silva hadn't even agreed to fight him," White said in an interview with MMAjunkie.com. "That fight wasn't happening. I had them bring Anderson to the place where the press conference was, and we sat in a room for three hours fighting about the fight."
It's common knowledge that Silva is not a fan of Sonnen—the man who has been bombarding him with trash talk for over two years—and that, if given the choice, he would be defending his UFC Middleweight Championship against someone else.
"(Silva wants to fight) anybody but Chael," White said. "He thinks Chael is disrespectful and doesn't deserve a shot at this title at all. So leading up to the press conference, it was delayed an hour because I was fighting with him in my room."
As is now known, White was eventually able to get Silva to sign the contract for a second Sonnen fight, which will take place on July 7th, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Though the champion is not keen on the idea of fighting him a second time, it's hard to deny that Sonnen has earned a rematch based on the way he was able to dominate Silva the first time around, as well as his victories over Brian Stann and Michael Bisping since then.
"My philosophy is always, if you don't like it, handle it in the octagon," White said. "You can't say a guy doesn't deserve it because you think he's mean. He definitely deserves the rematch. More than anybody. It's true. He's the only guy who's ever come close to beating him in the UFC."
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