Current UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis was at a sports bar in Milwaukee when he saw the now-famous injury that felled Anderson Silva at UFC 168.
“I couldn’t even watch it,” Pettis said. “It was disgusting.”
The injury occurred when Chris Weidman checked an inside leg kick from Silva with his knee. The result saw Silva’s leg snapped so completely that it looked nearly identical to the leg break that former TUF 5 contestant Corey Hill suffered against Dale Hartt in 2008.
Now, Pettis hopes that Silva does not come back to the sport that has seen the championship levels fashioned in his image.
“I hope he doesn’t [come back] because why?” Pettis told Yahoo Sports (h/t Marcus Vandenberg). “His legacy is already fulfilled. What’s he going to come back and win the belt? He’s done what he’s going to do in the sport.”
Pettis has a point; Silva has set nearly every significant record there is to be had in the UFC. He owns the longest win streak, the record for most consecutive title defenses and the longest title reign that the company has ever seen at longer than six years.
Silva claimed the title by destroying Rich Franklin at UFC 64 in 2006 and held it all the way up until UFC 162 of 2013.
Now, closing in on 40 years of age, one begins to wonder why any fighter would ponder making a return after such a brutal injury.
Oddly enough, perhaps Pettis answers his own question, and ours, as to why Silva would come back.
“It sucks because he’s one of the greatest of all-time.” Pettis said. “He’s the Muhammad Ali of MMA and the way he went out sucks.”
And that might be reason enough.