Anderson Silva has been on the road to recovery ever since breaking his leg in a rematch against Chris Weidman for the UFC Middleweight Championship.
As his return nears, the talk about his recovery has switched to who he will fight. Silva's camp brought up the name Nick Diaz, and on last week's UFC Tonight it was confirmed that this would be a fight to pull Diaz out of retirement.
With both fighters down to fight, there is little to no reason this should not be signed for a future card when Silva is healthy. This is perfect.
It is apparent that Diaz only wants superfights or title fights, and this is most certainly a superfight. He likes to fight strikers who will stand and exchange with him, and Silva fits that mold. You can toss out the notion of a grappling battle between these two, although that in itself would be fun to watch.
The return of Silva will be highly anticipated and an event onto itself. Handing him an opponent who wants to stand with him, and will likely taunt while doing so, is the greatest idea on this combat sport planet.
Both Diaz and Silva are polarizing figures. They generate interest from fans and non-fans. One of the reasons they are so polarizing is the aforementioned taunting.
Diaz will talk to his opponents, throw his hands out challenging them to throw strikes and even stick out his head from time to time. Silva will oblige.
Silva dances. He puts his hands down, bobs and weaves and calls for his opponents to battle him where he is best. Diaz will oblige.
Diaz is no stranger to the middleweight division. He has gone up in weight for prime-time bouts before. He met Frank Shamrock at a catchweight near the 180-pound mark. The Stockton native does not care about weight. He will fight anyone.
Diaz and Silva are in similar places. They are not in a position to challenge for a title, but they're still beloved enough that they almost demand to be placed in main event fights. This makes them perfect opposition for each other.
What are the other options? Leave Diaz to his retirement and ask him to fight welterweights he has no interest in fighting? Have Silva return against a middling middleweight that will draw little or no interest from fans other than Silva's return itself?
Those are not options that should make you happy. When thinking about what makes sense, what is fun and what fans would line up to hand over their hard-earned money for, this is the best idea. Diaz vs. Silva. The announcement alone would generate a buzz, and when the fight poster is released many would become giddy knowing it is actually going to happen.
Fans clamor for exciting fights, and this gives us all that. A can't-miss event that will entertain. Diaz vs. Silva is too perfect not to happen. It is the best idea for a fight that the UFC currently has available to them. The notion that it is possible, and that both are interested, puts a smile on my face. I'm sure it does to yours as well.
Mr. White, Mr. Silva, Mr. Fertitta—please sign this fight. Make us happy.