The UFC middleweight division just isn’t the same without a dominant Anderson Silva. Reigning champion Chris Weidman (pictured), the man who brought Silva’s historic run to a screeching halt, offers the steak but very little sizzle.
With a perfect 13-0 professional record and a gold belt wrapped around his waist, Weidman is the cream of the crop in the UFC’s middleweight class. The only problem for him is, he’s no Anderson Silva.
Outside of this little MMA bubble, very few people would even recognize Weidman even if he was standing right in front of them with a Reebok-produced t-shirt with “Yes, I am UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman” plastered on the back.
There are still big challenges that lie ahead for Weidman, first up being Luke Rockhold, but none of them will really offer big pay-per-view paydays on their own. He’s lucky the UFC anointed him and Rockhold as the opening act for the blockbuster featherweight title unification bout between champion Jose Aldo and interim champ Conor McGregor at UFC 194.
That’s why it wasn’t a huge surprise when Weidman went on “The MMA Hour” Monday to plead his case for a superfight against former UFC light heavyweight champ Jon Jones. After hearing the bankroll McGregor scored at UFC 189 and what Ronda Rousey made at UFC 190, Weidman rightfully wants a piece of the pie and he’s willing to jump a weight class to get it.
Weidman knows that a superfight against Jones is still years away. Jones first needs to get his personal life in order before he’s even allowed to try and reclaim the belt that was stripped from him after his latest arrest. Weidman is still a few title defenses out before he can claim to have waxed the middleweight division clean and bounce to 205.
And that’s why Weidman is planting the seed now, in order to build anticipation so when the time finally comes, the money train will be following closely behind. Sure, Weidman claims he wants Jones because he’s a “competitor” and wants to conquer “the biggest challenges,” but riding Jones’ coattails to a massive payday is surely the real reason. And nobody can blame “All-American” for it.
If it don’t make dollars, then it don’t make sense. This move by Weidman makes perfect sense, because it will certainly make big dollars when it comes to fruition.