Weidman Shocked at Silva vs. Bonnar, Thinks Silva's Managers Are Protecting Him
After back-to-back wins over top-10 middleweight opposition, talk in the MMA community grew in Weidman's favor of being the next contender for a shot at the UFC middleweight title.
Unfortunately, Silva's camp wasn't interested in a fight with Weidman. They felt a bout against a non-marquee name like Weidman wouldn't lead to large pay-per-view numbers.
The timing of a potential fight between the two didn't match up, either. Silva was looking to take the rest of the year off and return in 2013.
With Tim Boetsch, Alan Belcher and Michael Bisping all making cases for UFC gold, it would be a long and risky wait for Weidman, who hasn't fought since early July.
After exhausting his pleas for a title shot, Weidman moved on from Silva and accepted a December 29 fight with Boetsch. He then underwent minor elbow surgery to repair a nagging injury.
After Weidman's surgery, he learned that Jose Aldo had pulled out of his UFC 153 main event fight with Frankie Edgar, and a bout between Silva and Bonnar had been agreed upon as a replacement fight.
The news hit him like a ton of bricks.
"I was a little shocked, confused, and a little disappointed," Weidman said during an interview on FUEL TV's UFC Tonight.
I had actually had just ended up getting elbow surgery about a week ago, and as soon as I get done with announcing my Boetsch fight and getting elbow surgery, the same week, I find out Anderson Silva is now fighting Stephan Bonnar in UFC 153. It's tough.
This whole time him and his manager were very dead set on not fighting until 2013. They didn't really give a reason, but they just wanted to wait until 2013. And I thought that was a little fishy that all of a sudden now they pick up a fight like it's no big deal.
Bonnar is a well-respected and tough UFC light heavyweight, but he has never managed to separate himself from the middle of the herd and climb into the upper-echelon ranks of the division.
Before accepting the fight with Silva, he told MMA Junkie that he considered himself retired from fighting.
After preaching about big-money fights and taking time off, why would Silva's camp be so quick to take a fight with Bonnar?
Weidman believes he knows the answer.
I just think I'm a big risk for him on paper. I'm a good wrestler with good jiu-jitsu, which I don't think he's really seen anybody like me with the athleticism I have and my length and everything. I have a lot of tools. On paper, I'm a bad matchup for him. But I think Anderson would like a challenge, a tough challenge, but I think his managers more than him are trying to keep him away.
He's going to be making a couple million dollars on odds I've never even seen before. So it's a smart move for him. All power to him. It's just disappointing for me, and I just need to keep moving forward and hoping for the best.
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