We’re just three days away from probably the biggest UFC main event that we’ll watch this year, as Anderson Silva will defend his UFC Middleweight Championship against the No. 1 contender, Chris Weidman, at UFC 162 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on Saturday. Weidman is viewed by many as the biggest threat to Silva’s perfect UFC record to date, as the champ has won 16 fights in a row since making his UFC debut at Ultimate Fight Night 5 in 2006.
The 29-year old Weidman is a perfect 9-0 in his professional career, including a 5-0 record since making his UFC debut in 2011. And while some could argue that Weidman hasn’t fought any noteworthy opponents in his ascension to the No. 1 contender spot, he has still steamrolled his competition in impressive fashion. Impressive enough that UFC President Dana White claims that every fighter thinks Weidman is going to win on Saturday night.
“Every fighter out there that I’ve talked to and every fighter we’ve interviewed thinks Weidman is going to beat Anderson. All the pros think this is the biggest challenge Anderson has ever faced in the UFC. These are the guys who know the sport, the pros, and they are all saying Weidman could really shock the world. This is a huge fight in the middleweight division.” (Via)
You know what would be a fun promotional idea, Dana? A video supercut of “every fighter we’ve interviewed” saying they think Weidman is going to beat Silva. Otherwise, given the UFC’s recent track record of hyping fights, I’m not really inclined to buy that certainty. That’s not to say I can’t buy it, but I still think a better commercial for the PPV would be all of the UFC’s recognizable fighters giving their predictions.
At least Georges St-Pierre has individually weighed in and offered some additional insight as to why he thinks Spider is toast.
“I believe it’s a bad matchup for Anderson Silva. Very bad, style wise. Anderson’s weaknesses are Weidman’s strengths. I’ve trained with Weidman and his wrestling is on another level. Not only is Chris Weidman going to beat Anderson Silva, I believe he’s going to finish Anderson. I believe it’s not going to last too long, this fight. This fight will shock a lot of people. I’ve trained with Weidman and I know how good he is. He will be the champion. Anderson is smart, though, and is fighting Chris after a long layoff for injury. That’s why it is important for Weidman to have a great camp. But if Weidman gets though camp with no problems, he will win this fight.”
As much as I love, love, love Silva, I want Weidman to win. The middleweight division definitely needs it, the UFC desperately needs it and I’d argue that even Silva could use it. I understand that it’s awesome for the living legend to be undefeated in the UFC, but you know what’s cooler than that? A great rivalry, multiple rematches and having to win a title back. And Silva is guaranteed an immediate rematch if he loses, so I don’t know if anyone would truly lose.
Except, obviously, Silva. But I’m a big picture kind of guy.