He caught a lot of flack for his last two sub-par performances, both wins mind you, but the Anderson Silva of old showed up at UFC 101 as he knocked out former UFC champion Forrest Griffin at 3:23 in the 1stRound of their scrap.
“Forrest is a good guy,” Silva said of his latest conquest. “He’s a good fighter. He’s a good man.”
Coming into his fight inside the Wachovia Center in Philadelphia, PA., “The Spider” was dogged by fans and UFC president Dana White alike for his back-to-back lackluster performances against Patrick Cote and Thales Leites, respectively.
Silva had pretty much waxed his division clean and was riding a dominating 10-fight winning, which might explain why he was getting a little bored.
This is the second time that MMA’s most efficient striker has been forced to move up in weight to face “tougher” competition. It took him all of 61 seconds to put James Irvin to sleep in his light heavyweight debut for the UFC last July.
Silva looked sharp, quick and most importantly, focused. In case we forgot, Anderson reminded us what can happen if he’s motivated. So the question is, now what?
“I want to fight against the best,” Silva said when asked after the fight if he’d continue competing as a middleweight or light heavyweight. “Whoever the best is at the time, that’s who I want to fight.”
Perhaps it’s best for Silva, the UFC and its fans if he focuses more of his efforts at 205. He is clearly untouchable in his own division, and at least he is challenged fighting bigger opponents, which ultimately treats fans to performances like tonight.
It’s a win/win for all, right?
“It’s a big problem, because these guys at 205 (pounds) are a lot bigger than me,” Silva said of fighting in the light heavies. “But I want to fight against the best.”
If he’s dead set on fighting the best on the planet, the light heavyweight class clearly presents the most options, blockbuster options as a matter of fact.
After Saturday night’s showing, most are considering him the best, AGAIN.