Anderson Silva vs. Forrest Griffin: Why the Fight Was Not Fixed

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Anderson Silva vs. Forrest Griffin: Why the Fight Was Not Fixed
(Photo by Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images)

After a fan favorite of the UFC loses, we usually see the Web flooded with excuses and explanations of why it happened, even if these explanations insult the victor.

We saw it happen after UFC 69, when Matt Serra shocked the world by making Georges St. Pierre submit due to strikes. After Anderson Silva's embarrassing knockout of Forrest Griffin at UFC 101, we once again heard different stories to explain the devastating loss:

Forrest dislocated his jaw.

Forrest couldn't hear out of one ear.

And so on.

Personally, these explanations and excuses really didn't matter to me, since I truly believe that the reason Forrest lost in such a spectacular fashion was due to the fact that he was just outclassed by a better fighter.

After the roar of Griffin's loss started dying down, another more sinister theory sprang up on the many forums of different MMA sites:

The fight was fixed.

Now this, as opposed to the other explanations, actually made me angry. Some of the questions raised to support this theory were as follows:

How was Silva so confident in winning that he dropped his hands and mocked Forrest?

How could Forrest get knocked out by a lazy right jab?

Why did he run out of the Octagon immediately after the fight?

I will try to answer these questions one by one in order to refute the unjustified claim that the fight was fixed.

The first question:

How was Silva so confident in winning that he dropped his hands and mocked Forrest?

This question has an obvious answer, especially when you look at Silva's history in the Octagon. He did the same thing in his fights against Rich Franklin, Patrick Cote, and Thales Leites. It’s just a ploy to get into his opponent’s head.

It is true that in this fight he did it more frequently and more blatantly than in his previous fights, but it all served to reinforce the message he wanted to send that night. He came to UFC 101 with the intent to show the world:

I am not a boring fighter; I am the best.

And by God, did he show us that.

 

The second question:

How could Forrest get knocked out by a lazy right jab?

To give a sufficient answer to this question, one has to watch the exchanges earlier in the fight. The fight-ending knockdown (it wasn't a knockout) was caused not by a power punch, but by a well-timed and well-placed short jab. At face value, it seems almost impossible to do.

But it is made more realistic by the fact that Forrest threw that combination quite a few times during the fight, which allowed Silva to get the timing down.

At 2:41, when Forrest threw the left-right-left, Silva counter-punched and knocked him down.

When Forrest threw a right-left combination at 3:05, Silva hit him with a right, timed well again.

After this, Forrest threw a right-left-right at 3:18, but before Forrest's last swing Silva timed it perfectly and knocked him down for the last time. It was a matter of great timing and good placement. Plus, Griffin wasn't knocked out cold.

Was it shocking and absolutely incredible?

Definitely.

Was it staged/fixed?

Definitely not.

 

The last question:

Why did Forrest run out of the Octagon immediately after the fight?

This question doesn’t have a concrete answer like the ones above, but it can nevertheless be answered with some common sense. Forrest came into that fight, as in many other fights, as the underdog. This means that most people thought Silva would win.

Yet no one thought it would happen this way.

Forrest is one tough dude, but any human being, after being humiliated like that in front of millions, would feel extremely embarrassed.

I know that if that had happened to me, I would have cried like a baby and run away.

It wasn’t sportsmanlike conduct by Griffin, but should we hold it against him?

I don’t think so.

 

In conclusion, we see that these cries of “The fight was fixed!” and “Forrest threw the fight!” are unwarranted. Forrest came to the fight with a bad game plan: to strike with Silva. The Spider violently showed us why this was a terrible idea.

I can see why people have come to suggest that the fight was fixed. I don’t think that in the history of the UFC we have ever seen this type of utter domination in such a mortifying fashion.

But to suggest that the fight was fixed is not only uncalled for and untrue, it is also insulting to the fans and fighters alike.

This fight was not a fixed fight.

It was just another demonstration of why Anderson Silva is the best striker in all of MMA.

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