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Anderson Silva: ‘I’m not unbeatable’

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.

18 COMMENTS
  • Angry Mike says:

    They both fought tactical fights. Leites tried to stay away from Silva, and Silva for the most part wouldn’t go to the ground. It wasn’t a stand up brawl, but there’s more to MMA than just that. And since Silva is the champion, the burden is on challengers like Leites to beat him. If they won’t engage with Silva, they’ll lose. It’s always been that way, even in boxing.

  • ERTZ says:

    Without getting into the politics of game-plans and all that…I just think that him saying this clearly makes him no longer a consideration for a top P4P fighter. If he’s just in there to escape with a win, even if that means fights with just a couple of strikes per round, I can’t choose to give him that much credit from here on out.

  • GetItOn says:

    ERTZ you should give him a hell of a lot more credit after reading this.

    He didn’t throw just “a couple” of strikes per round. Anderson threw 179 strikes and landed 83 of those. 31 of those strikes landed were power strikes. He attempted to take Leites down three times and was successful all three times.

  • Rok 1 says:

    I think ERTZ is right when he says Anderson’s pound-for-pound status should be diminished. Silva said it himself:

    “Every day we get older, the reflex is no longer the same.”

    “I’m no longer a kid.”

    Based on that, it’s not my opinion when I say he’s not the same fighter anymore.

    Furthermore, I have a hard time with a self-admittedly “conservative” fighter being considered the top pound-for-pound fighter.

  • inkythewinky says:

    leites had some crazy things to say about anderson post fight, i couldnt believe it

  • fedorman says:

    After this he should be forced to fight: GSP, Evans, Wanderlei, winner of hendo/bisping. GSP and wanderlei for 185 title, others at 205, cheers!

    And if he manages to beat all them, then to hell with roy jones, we will need him to fight fedor!

  • jbova says:

    Come on. A fighters p4p status can only be affected by the fighter’s performance, not by what he or she says in an interview.

  • Austin says:

    When superman flies into vegas and kick’s anderson silva’s ass, then I’ll believe it.

  • lalo_g80 says:

    This is utterly pathetic. Anderson sounds scared. Look by all means he should have disposed of Leites very quickly. He chose not to. Why is he so scared to fight Leites on the ground? All I kept hearing before the fight was how his black belt in BJJ was so much better than Leites’ black belt. If thats the case then why not show it. I like Anderson SIlva, but this is all a load of BS in my opinion. There are only two possible reasons for this. 1 he is scared or 2 his BJJ maybe not as good as most think it is. Just cuz we saw him submit Lutter…

  • ctownhood says:

    That whole “getting older” non-sense does not diminish his P4P status…hasn’t affected Fedor one bit

  • Ft. Dub says:

    ERTZ is right on the money. I was questioning his P4P ranking after seeing in his performance that he would not engage. To me, P4P means you can win the fight any time, any where (see GSP dominating wrestlers). Spider pretty much admitted that he will do the least necessary to win and a fighter doing that CAN NOT be P4P.

    Sounds like he WOULD be the perfect matchup for the old version of Roy Jones.

  • wardog says:

    I don’t question his P4P status probably because I hate those rankings anyway. I cannot blame Silva for not wanting to go to the mats with Leites, especially if he thought his BJJ was not as good as his. Why don’t they just tell him his next opponent is going to GSP and lets get this over with? Then let him take on the LHW Champ (Michida would be great fight). After that the winner of the Henderson- Bisping fight. Then I don’t know whomever. He’s done after his 4th fight and will probably go box Jones. So make the most out of it!

  • JJ Docker says:

    I think people need to get off Silva’s back. He has had two “bad” fights, which he actually won, against legit competition. Lets be honest, in the Cote fight he was playing, cautiously playing yes, but still more or less playing. In the Leites fight, he was very cautious – but for good reason. Leites has a sick ground game, much better than Silva’s. Whoever posted above saying that Silva’s is better and “he should prove it” is wrong, Silva knows as well as any MMA fan worth his salt that Leite’s is world class on the ground. And for the record, Silva didn’t submit Lutter, at least not in the conventional sense that you’re alluding to. Lutters appalling gas tank landed him in the position and elbow strikes forced him to tap. Is Silva talented on the ground? Yes. Is he world class? No. It was a bad match up for him; his strength is knocking people onto their ass and Leites’ is sitting on his, waiting for eager opponents to jump into guard. Put him against a striker or a wrestler that will come at him, i.e. Franklin, Henderson, Marquardt, and, most of the time, he will destroy them. No one in his weight class in the world can beat him and no one has evidence to argue otherwise. The same can be said for GSP and Fedor, so as for the P4P rankings – it’s close. But, you could argue Silva deserves it over GSP because when Silva has a bad night he wins a boring decision; he doesn’t get TKO’d by a huge underdog (Serra), and over Fedor as he fights legitimate, dangerous contenders for his crown on a consistent basis. Either way, he won a fight that was an extremely awkward match up for him, boring or not, and he gets blasted, surely he deserves more than this.

  • AR says:

    Really?!! I cant believe how many people want to see GSP’s career end stepping into the octagon with Silva. This is crazy. How many fights has GSP had at 205?? Or even 185?? Granted GSP’s the man at 170 but if he were to step in the cage with Silva, what could he do that Franklin, Hendo, Marquart, Lutter, Liben, and Leites couldn’t??? Rub vasoline over his body, take him down & beat him down that way? Sound like a poor gameplan to me, hell GSP couldn’t even beat a 155er fairly. And as for P4P…who cares? Silva’s the man at 185 until someone can do something about it, trust it WILL NOT be GSP. Thats a guarentee like death & taxes.
    Besides how many really thought Leites was gonna win? He wasn’t even the actual #1 contender. He just slipped in because Bisbing’s taking care the The TUF cast.

  • obamasaidknockyouout says:

    You know…I understand both sides arguments. I was not as miffed as most about Anderson’s performance because I like watching technical matches in addition to all out slobberknockers. The dude does something I have never seen in each fight. However, the last two fights have not been that exciting for most people, including myself. The absolute best fights are the ones with brutality and technique. Anderson is giving us the technique, but his fights will never be that entertaining if he does not take more risks.

    After the Cote fight, I was worried that Anderson’s mentality on the fight game had changed because he did not take many risks and was extremely comfortable in doing so. The Leites fight and this interview confirm that Silva is not concerned about taking risks anymore and putting on an entertaining performance, he is only concerned with winning. He has developed that Roy Jones or Pretty Boy Floyd mentality.

    Based on this, UFC is going to have to throw Anderson in with guys that will engage him if they hope for the entertainment that everyone so craves. I still think Anderson is one of the p4p best, but my expectations on how exciting his fights are going to be from here on out has greatly diminished.

  • MMA-LOGIC says:

    Lets see him face more class opponents before we call him great…like Henderson again or Lindland, Belfort, Misaki, Mousassi, Jacre, lawler, Le, Manouf, Maia, Okami…wait a minute who has he beaten!…oh Chris Leben and Travis Lutter, thats right.

  • mu_shin says:

    Yeah, what has he done, who has he fought… He’s only finished 18 of his 24 wins, fourteen knockouts. Yeah, just stepped in against palookas off the street, like Franklin, Marquardt, Dan Henderson,…

    No one gets paid to appear on a P4P list. Silva gets paid to win, and he does. Hoping he’ll have a great fight against Forrest Griffin, and quiet the doubters. Until someone takes the belt, or he walks away, Anderson Silva remains the champion.

  • roefi says:

    “a dangerous submission artist like Leites, who’s best chance at obtaining victory lay on the canvas of the octagon…..”

    Dear writer, the word is “whose”.

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