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Rashad Evans: "Silva is My First, My Last, My Everything"

CULVER CITY, CA - DECEMBER 14:  UFC fighter Rashad Evans presents the Best Shooter award onstage at Spike TV's 2008 'Video Game Awards' held at Sony Pictures' Studios on December 14, 2008 in Culver City, California.  (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for Spike TV)
Kevin Winter/Getty Images
Brian O. BlakeCorrespondent IDecember 28, 2009

Yup, I just hit you with some Barry White. 

Actually, it was Rashad Evans who recently channeled the late-great Mr. White during a national media teleconference.

With so many questions being tossed in his direction regarding a rematch with Light Heavyweight Champion Lyoto Machida or an anticipated fight with "Rampage" Jackson, he was left to quote "The Maestro" in an attempt to let the press know that his focus is solely geared on his current opponent, Thiago Silva.

Silva is coming off of a spectacular first round stoppage win over Evans' friend and fellow Jackson's Submission Fighting stablemate, Keith Jardine.

No one likes to see their teammate beaten, but perhaps that's exactly what Evans (13-1-1) needed to maintain focus for a bout which could be perceived as not quite a "high-profile" fight as one with Machida or Jackson.

Then again, only a fool  would overlook Silva who has all but one of his 14 victories coming by way of TKO or submission.  Silva (14-1), who trains with the American Top Team crew in Florida, poses a threat to anyone that steps into the Octagon with him, especially one who might have his sights set on other challenges.

Rashad "Sugar" Evans isn't that fool and maintains, "Those guys [Machida and Jackson] mean nothing if I don't get past Thiago."

Evans only appearance inside the Octagon this year came back in May when he lost his UFC Light Heavyweight Championship to Machida (Silva lost to Machida just four months earlier). 

Shortly afterwards it was announced that he would coach The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights opposite "Rampage", whom he was expected to fight.  Obviously that fight never materialized with Jackson going on a well publicized hiatus to film the upcoming A-Team movie.

So now he finds himself preparing for the headlining bout of UFC 108: Evans vs. Silva .  It may not be the bout he expected, but it's what immediately lies before him. 

It's a bout that will lead to his inevitable showdown with Quinton "Rampage" Jackson.  It's a bout that could leave him knocking on the door of Lyoto "The Dragon" Machida with an opportunity to regain his coveted title.  There is, undeniably, a lot on the line when it comes to his future in the UFC.

And it all begins with the always dangerous Thiago Silva.

Which is exactly why Rashad Evans sees him as "his first, his last, his everything."

Questions and comments can be sent to brianoblake@yahoo.com

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