Anderson Silva was the most dominant champion in the history of the UFC’s middleweight division, and arguably the most dominant champion in the history of mixed martial arts.
His reign was the longest in UFC history, spanning ten consecutive successful title defenses over the course of almost seven years.
In the sport’s history, perhaps only Fedor Emelianenko, the dominant heavyweight champion of the PRIDE era, can be compared.
But it all came crashing down in 2013, when Silva was knocked out by Chris Weidman. Then in the rematch, the old legend suffered a horrific leg injury has had him sidelined for more than a year now.
So, many of us were shocked to hear Silva will receive a title shot should he win his comeback fight against Nick Diaz on January 31 at UFC 183. Here at Caged Insider, Jim Genia implied the booking reeked of sadism.
However, Silva’s longtime friend Lyoto Machida, who began competing at middleweight in 2013 after a successful career at light heavyweight, doesn’t seem to be one of them.
In an interview at Tatame.br, reported and translated in part by Fernando Arbex of Bloody Elbow, Machida is quoted as saying he “wishes the criteria were stronger and better defined.” But, he adds, “we need to move on… I like to focus on my work.”
Of the possibility of fighting his longtime friend? Machida calls the possible match “a bout far away of happening.” But, he adds, “Of course I would. As a professional, I would do it.”