UFC 153: Anderson Silva Explains Why He Took Fight with Stephan Bonnar

John Heinis@HeinisHardNewsSenior Analyst IOctober 8, 2012

Ever since UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva was booked to face Stephan Bonnar in a light heavyweight bout, fans and analysts have been critical of the pairing. 

Despite being a massive mismatch on paper, don't expect Silva to take "The American Psycho" lightly on Saturday evening. In an interview with the UFC, the Brazilian states:

You have to respect Stephan Bonnar. He is the reason why MMA and the UFC are where they are today. He has done a lot for the sport. He has to be respected and given a lot of credit.

While "The Spider" greatly respects the runner-up of the original Ultimate Fighter, he had other motivations for taking on the opportunity to fight in Brazil for the second time this year. 

It was a request from Dana White to come in and save UFC 153. It was an opportunity to give back to all the Brazilian fans for what they did to support me in my last fight ... I believe I have more agility, more speed at this weight. I don’t know about the power, but I do believe I am more agile. Due to the short amount of time to train, it is easier to make 205 rather than to try to cut down to 185.

UFC 153, which takes place at Rio de Janeiro's HSBC Arena, was originally supposed to be headlined by a featherweight title clash between Jose Aldo and Frankie Edgar. 

Unfortunately, "Scarface" pulled out of the event last month due to a foot injury he suffered during training. 

Also worth noting is that Silva was willing to fight at light heavyweight for the now infamously cancelled UFC 151 card, but the UFC had already canned the event by the time Silva had contacted White.

Silva enters Saturday night with a a perfect 15-0 record under the UFC banner, while Bonnar comes in on the strength of three victories in a row. 

Does Bonnar stand any chance of pulling off an upset here, or is he simply going to be another knockout victim added to Silva's highlight reel?