Gruesomely breaking his tibia and fibula at UFC 168 on a Chris Weidman leg check hasn't pushed longtime former middleweight champ and pound-for-pound king Anderson Silva into retirement.
"What do I have to tell you is that I will go back. I'm stronger every day. Thank you for the strength of you (and) thanks for the positive energy. Soon I'm back and hopefully I can still give many joys for you, fighting."
Weidman ended the rematch when he lifted his knee to check a Silva low kick roughly 1:15 into Round 2. "The All-American" timed the defensive maneuver with precision.
"The Spider" then uncorked a low kick, only to watch the wrong portion of his shin collide with Weidman's knee. The clash snapped his lower leg and caused him to crumble to the mat in agony.
He underwent successful emergency surgery in Las Vegas the night of the fight. He left Las Vegas three days later to return to his home in Los Angeles.
Although surprisingly optimistic regarding a return, The Spider, who described the pain of the injury as "an absurd thing," understands that doctors can't guarantee that his left leg will ever be fight-ready again.
"Still, he can say it. I have to prepare myself for that too. (But) I am confident that everything will be OK, I'll be fine and that I will fight again soon."
Regardless of the odds he's facing, Silva, still the UFC's seventh-ranked pound-for-pound fighter and its top-ranked middleweight, seems adamant that he's not through with his life's work.
"It's when do you feel the need to stop. Your body tells you, your mind tells you 'now is time to stop.' I think I still have much to do in the fight and I have no intention of stopping this."
Before freakishly breaking his left leg at UFC 168, he had won 16 of 17 UFC bouts, including 11 of 12 in title fights.
At UFC 162 in July, Weidman knocked out Silva early in the second round to snap his record 16-fight winning streak in the promotion. The setback also marked Silva's first KO loss in 38 pro bouts.