Not many people, outside of his immediate family, are giving Chael Sonnen much of a shot against Anderson Silva at UFC 117 in Oakland.
But I think this fight will be much closer than people are anticipating, and I agree with Amazing Individual Chael Sonnen that Silva must be beaten up for the good of humanity. Or whatever his quote to that sentiment was.
So far, Anderson Silva has only lost one round in the UFC and it was to a high caliber wrestler like Sonnen (Dan Henderson).
So for the good of humanity, I’ve put my amateur fight planning hat on and come up with a five step plan that will enable Mr Sonnen to shock the World.
First, don’t let Silva get off early. Silva has a tendency to come out, measure an opponent, see that he can dominate them standing, then back off and wait for the opponent to do something stupid. Watch his fight against Forrest Griffin for all the evidence you’d ever need to see of what happens when Silva times an opponent. Sonnen cannot let Silva get off to a fast start. He has to show the Spider right away. This will be an ugly grind of a match.
Secondly, be willing to take shots to get the fight to the ground. It’s highly unlikely the self proclaimed "world’s fastest white man” will be able to shoot in on Silva without taking any damage. Sonnen has got to mentally accept that he’s going to have to take some punishment in order to dish it out.
Third, avoid the clinch like the plague. You can ask Rich Franklin about Silva’s strength in the clinch. Clinching with Silva is like asking to get knee’d in the face multiple times.
Fourth, grind it out. Sonnen’s strategy should be to fight for the decision, making this match about grappling on the ground and control. Look what happened to Shane Carwin when he got overly excited to finish a fight. Sonnen should plan to make Silva fight him allout for the full 25 minutes.
Lastly, piss him off. We’ve never seen a mad Anderson Silva. In my observation, there are two ways anger affects athletes, either it hones their focus to a laser point of vengeance, as it did for the greatest athlete of all time Michael Jordan. Or it makes you sloppy and overly aggressive like too many athletes to mention. My guess is Sonnen trash talking Silva in the ring will throw him off and make him too anxious to get the finish, giving Sonnen some openings.
Sonnen is a smart fighter and a great promoter and I think him beating Silva may help to humble what I feel is the cockiest and most disrespectful athlete in all of mixed martial arts.
Here’s hoping Sonnen can back up his talk.
Written By JL