After falling under an enormous amount of criticism for a lackluster, seemingly uninspired title defense against Thales Leites at UFC 97, UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva has recently revealed the real reason behind his most recent highly scrutinized gameplan is the fact that, in his words, he’s ‘no longer a kid’.
In a recent interview with Tatame.com following the championship match-up that took place on April 18, Silva expressed that as he gets older he is likely to adapt a more and more conservative fighting style.
“Every day we get older, the reflex is no longer the same,” the thirty four year old Brazilian was quoted as saying. “To fight with a kid like Thales and try to do things that might put me at risk wouldn’t be good for my career.”
“I’m not risking something that took a long time for me to win.”
“I’m no longer a kid, I have much to lose. It took so long to get here and we, as the age comes, do more conservative fights. I won’t expose myself and be knocked out. I have to be the most efficient possible with any opponent that I fight.”
In all due respect, from a tactical standpoint, Silva fought the smartest and most effective fight he could have against a dangerous submission artist like Leites, who’s best chance at obtaining victory lay on the canvas of the octagon.
Whether the recent revelation of Silva’s intentions to employ a somewhat safer approach to his fights will result in a watered down version of the champion that was once revered for his finishing ability remains to be seen.
The bottom line for Anderson is that he’s here to win fights. Whether he looks good doing it matters not to him. As long as he can keep it up, he’s going to continue to do whatever it takes to win, because even Silva knows perfectly well, no man is immune to defeat in the octagon.
“One day I’ll lose, I’m not unbeatable,” admitted the dominant champion.