Along with the rest of the MMA world, Bezerra, Silva’s longtime coach, watched in astonishment as Chris Weidman landed the left hook and right hand that closed the curtains on the greatest championship reign in UFC history.
Immediately after the fight, the court of public opinion began regurgitating theory after theory in a desperate attempt to find some understanding and reasoning behind the loss. At 38 years old, no one expected Silva to remain unbeaten forever.
Still, it’s tough to accept the fact that a young and relatively unknown contender was fated to be the one to succeed where some of the most respected legends in the sport had failed.
As a natural defense mechanism, fans began blaming Silva’s reckless fighting style and “clowning” for the loss. Some even went as far as drawing up conspiracy theories in an attempt to prove that the fight was fixed to generate even more revenue in a rematch.
Unfortunately, the court of public opinion holds no real relevance to the matter at hand. The only opinion that really matters is Anderson Silva’s.
He is the one who spent endless hours in the gym grinding it out in preparation for a man his peers lauded as the next middleweight champ. He is the one who put on the four ounce gloves and stepped into the cage that fateful night and, ultimately, he was the one who got knocked out and lost the UFC title.
In speaking with Brazil’s Globo TV, via MMAFighting.com, Bezerra said Silva admitted that he struggled and couldn’t hit Weidman. This only echoes Silva’s claims at the post-fight press conference that all of the taunting was done in an attempt to get in Weidman’s head and keep the fight standing.
“Nobody likes to lose. I train four months to win. But you end [up] learning with your mistakes, and I learned the worst way possible,” said Silva.
Silva isn’t the only person learning a lesson from this fight.
Leading up to the bout, the vast majority of fans considered it blasphemous that anyone could ever pick against Silva, especially in a bout with Weidman.
The unpredictability of MMA is what makes the sport so alluring. With so many different styles, the dynamic of the sport is always changing, and new stars are always rising. Fights are decided by styles, not names or past accomplishments.
There are no conspiracies or hidden reasons behind Silva’s loss. The answer has been there all along, and even after UFC 162, some still refuse to see it.
Perhaps Chris Weidman is better than we thought.
Jordy McElroy is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. He is also the MMAwriter for Rocktagon Worldwide.