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Chris Leben: I think Wanderlei Silva should be next for me

There’s no veil of of mystery surrounding Chris Leben‘s gameplan going into UFC 116 as “The Crippler” faces off with Japanese fighting sensation Yoshihiro Akiyama on just two weeks notice. In what should come as little surprise, Leben recently hinted at what fans will be in store for this Saturday evening in Las Vegas during the pre-fight press conference held for the event late this afternoon.

“My game plan for all of my opponents remains the same, go out there and punch him in the face,” said Leben.

Akiyama recently made headlines when speaking openly about his dissapointment with Leben as a replacement following a previously slated middleweight bout Wanderlei Silva falling apart due to a training injury suffered by “The Axe Murderer”, but if Leben has it his way it will be him that faces off with the former PRIDE champion following a convincing victory over “Sexyama” from the MGM Grand Garden Arena 48 hours from now.

“I think Wanderlei Silva was supposed to fight this fight, so if I win this fight, I think Wanderlei should be next for me,” said Leben.

Expect for Silva to be watching this fight with an extremely critical eye as the winner being his next opponent seems to be an inevitability at this point.

13 COMMENTS
  • moosebaby02 says:

    he has a good point. but i think he should worry about Sexyama before he starts calling out people.

  • MickeyC says:

    Gotta agree with Moose. Dude has enought to worry about. Deal with Silva if you win.

  • gy614x says:

    DAMN IM EXCITED FOR THIS FIGHT, I DONT KNOW HOW YOU CANT BE!

    really though, while im picking leben for this fight, i think a fight with the axe murderer would be one of the most awesome matches, two guys with one thing in mind, standing and trading…..wow, that would be soo cool

  • Rece Rock says:

    I agree with dime of the above posts- Leben has a full plate and a tough task in front of him… I think he gets the win but he better worry about sexyama before he even thinks about the axe murder…

  • Rece Rock says:

    * Dime = some…. FML.

  • Dufresne says:

    Leben is one of my favorite fighters in MMA, but he better be careful here. Akiyama has a pretty solid ground game with something like 7 submission wins, and the majority of Leben’s losses have come via submission. Throw in that Akiyama has only been finished (legally) by a guy that outweighed him by almost 100 lbs, and Leben’s weaknesses are matching up well with Akiyama’s strengths here.

    I personally hope Leben can get the win and I hope he can live up to his proposed method of victory: “I think that utilizing my skills, keeping it on the feet and clubbing him in the head with my left shouldn’t be too much of a problem.”

  • Connor Cobain says:

    The sad thing is I think Leben might win, Sexyama has a way better ground game but he is willing to stand up and trade with anyone. He was going to against Wanderlei. Leben can take all the punishment in the world and still trough that damn left handgrenade of his. Akiyama needs to aproach this as if it was Melvin Manhoef again.

  • stone says:

    Leben should get the KO win… Yama’s stand up just don’t look at all impressive… I know Yama is a strong dude but I just don’t see him slammin Leben too the ground and submitting him… Last time Leben got submitted, he was gassed out. On his last fight with Simpson he said he was well prepared to bring the fight to A.S. in the later part of the fight. So he obviously worked on his gas tank… Yama is just like ALL the asian fighters from the Japan leagues, good “over there” but, just aint cuttin it over here in the UFC. (Gomi, yoshiro, uno, etc)… Okami seems too be the only “asian threat”

  • Spoken says:

    I expect Akiyama to fight this pretty conservatively because he needs to win to get his fight with Wanderlei. I say look for a brief exchange in which Akiyama gets a big throw from the clinch, controls position, and spends his time looking for a sub/gnp finish early. Quick and painless so he can be healthy and prepared for the axe murderer. If it doesn’t work, he should have an almost guaranteed decision win. I doubt Leben knows what to do against a top-level Judoka in the clinch.

  • manny says:

    Yeah, and A. Silva should fight me next.
    What ever, just another fighter trying to get attention by trash talking.
    Sexy-yama by decision.

  • Angry Mike says:

    It would be a mistake for Akiyama to stand and trade with Leben because that’s Leben’s strength. Fight the battle on the ground of your choosing, not that of your opponent.

  • Genesis says:

    Manny, you must be new to mma…

  • Chris Leban…you are my awesome. 2 fights in 2 weeks. Animal. I’m rooting for you in this fight. Light it up.

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