When UFC matchmaker Joe Silva calls a middleweight to alert them they will be fighting Chael Sonnen, two things might come to mind: Firstly, Sonnen dominated champion Anderson Silva for 24 minutes so it’s possible he could do the same to me, and secondly, I might be the direct target of a vicious verbal assault.
However, the fact MMA’s most creative smack-talker has lambasted nearly every Brazilian fighter within earshot didn’t concern Brian Stann (Pictured) one bit. In fact, the former WEC champ knew Sonnen wasn’t about to antagonize him.
“No,” Stann flatly stated when asked if he was surprised by Sonnen’s silence. “I told everybody from the start that I didn’t think it was gonna happen. I believe Chael is very genuine when he says that if he has a problem with somebody, he will seek it. If he doesn’t have a problem with somebody, he won’t.
“When you saw his fights against Nate Marquardt, Dan Miller, Yushin Okami, he didn’t have anything to say about those guys. He spoke about the fight. So it wasn’t surprising to me at all that it didn’t happen.”
Publicly dissing a former military man clearly wouldn’t have been Sonnen’s best play, particularly since America just recognized the 10-year anniversary of September 11th, and that’s likely why he opted to stand clear. However, even if Uncle Chael would have chosen to go after Uncle Sam’s protégé, it wouldn’t have fazed MMA’s modern day G.I. Joe in the least.
“I wouldn’t have taken it personally, anyways, if there was anything used to generate hype around this fight,” Stann admitted. “But I really think our skill sets and the way that we fight has really generated all the hype it needs.”
What most believe is a middleweight top contender bout takes place this Saturday at UFC 136. The Toyota Center in Houston, Texas will host their shootout.