Robert Drysdale: Chris Weidman Is 'a Better Version' of Chael Sonnen

John HeinisSenior Analyst IJune 19, 2013

Jul. 7, 2012; Las Vegas, NV, USA; UFC fighter Chael Sonnen (right) against Anderson Silva during a middleweight bout in UFC 148 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Recently signed UFC fighter Robert Drysdale is one of the most accomplished Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belts in the business, so he knows a talented grappler when he sees one. 

Talking with MMA Fight Corner, the 32-year-old broke down the UFC 162 middleweight title fight between Anderson Silva and Chris Weidman. 

I think that Weidman, to an extent, is is a better version of Chael Sonnen. I think he'll be smarter. I think he'll put more time into his jiu jitsu. I think he's a better wrestler, better striker. I think overall, he's a better version of Chael Sonnen. ... It's an interesting fight. I think if Weidman can get on top of Anderson, I think Anderson could be in trouble. I think if you really pressed me, I'd still put my money on Anderson, but I'd really like Weidman to win this fight.

During his incredible 16-fight unbeaten streak in the UFC, the only challenger that has provided "The Spider" with a real test inside the cage is none other than "The American Gangster."

Sonnen came within inches of defeating Silva at UFC 117 nearly three years ago, controlling the action with his takedowns and ground-and-pound.

However, the Brazilian managed to throw up a miracle submission in the waning moments of the fight, forcing the former two-time All-American wrestler to tap out. 

In their rematch at UFC 148 this past July, Sonnen took down Silva right off the bat and secured top position for the majority of the opening frame. 

The second round went much differently though, as Sonnen's attempts to drag the fight to the mat were thwarted and, after an ill-advised spinning backfist attempt, Silva battered his long-time rival until the referee stepped in to stop the fight. 

Weidman received his brown belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu earlier this month and was a two-time All-American wrestler at Hofstra University. 

While "The All-American" is best known for his grappling credentials, he has scored three knockouts and notched three submissions in his nine wins as a professional mixed martial artist. 

Drysdale is currently 6-0 on the MMA scene, with each win coming by submission in the first round. His UFC debut comes against Ednaldo Oliveira at UFC 163, set to take place on August 3. 

Will Weidman be able to live up to all the hype his fellow fighters have bestowed upon him, or will he be just another victim to the already lengthy Anderson Silva highlight reel?


John Heinis is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. He is also the MMA Editor for and contributes MMA videos to The Young Turks Sports Show.