What's next for Anderson Silva?
That's been the burning question of the moment, ever since he finished Chael Sonnen in the second round at UFC 148 to put an emphatic end to their rivalry.
To many, the middleweight division has never been more stacked than it is right now. Chris Weidman, Michael Bisping, Brian Stann and Tim Boetsch have all emerged as potential contenders to the middleweight throne, with Weidman seemingly the odds-on favorite to be the next guy in line to score a title shot.
But Silva doesn't want to fight Weidman. As a matter of fact, he doesn't really want to fight anyone else at middleweight, either. Silva's manager Jorge Guimaraes spoke to Brazilian outlet Tatame about the swirling rumors concerning The Spider and his next opponent:
"That's a big joke," said Guimaraes. "Everybody saw that it worked for Chael, and he got really famous with that, and now everybody wants to be on the spotlight."
"No opponent makes sense for Anderson at this moment. Unless we do a catchweight against Georges St. Pierre. They didn't offer the fight, but he's the only one that could do a super fight. Anderson has the biggest paycheck in the UFC, and you can't promote an event with these amateur kids that are coming up now".
First and foremost, let me state that I'm still very interested in seeing Silva vs. St-Pierre. If that's the route Silva wants to go, and if St-Pierre is willing to jump up a few pounds for a catchweight bout, I'd be excited to see it.
But the reality is this: It's probably not going to happen.
St-Pierre has been extremely hesitant in the past when answering questions about a move to middleweight. And the UFC believes—rightly so, I must add—that there are still plenty of worthy contenders in both divisions for each guy to defend their respective belts against.
But it seems like Silva doesn't really see it that way. Sure, this was Guimaraes speaking and not Silva, but calling Weidman and the rest of the group "amateurs" is a tad bit silly. They're legitimate contenders, whether Silva's camp believes they are or not, and it doesn't really matter if they believe Silva would have little trouble defeating any of them.
The purpose of mixed martial arts is to find out who the better fighter in the cage is by, well, putting them in the cage and letting them fight. You can say Weidman, Boetsch and the others would be significant underdogs going into a bout with Silva, and you'd be correct.
But you can't say they're amateurs. And you can't say they have no chance at all, because anything can happen in mixed martial arts. This simply reeks of arrogance, and I'm a little surprised that Silva is allowing this kind of language to come out of his camp.
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