How many fighters can we name whose presence always reminded us of greatness? How many athletes we can name who stepped into the octagon and made the fans realize they were watching something special? No matter what criteria is used to make a list of greatest fighters to ever compete inside the octagon, Anderson Silva makes all of those lists.
With a KO win with in the first minute of the fight, Anderson Silva made his presence known in his UFC debut. He would go on to win the UFC title in the same year by beating UFC veteran, Rich Franklin. During his title reign, he overcame some legends such as Demian Maia, Forrest Griffin, Dan Henderson, Vitor Belfort, and the list goes on. Silva was untouchable for years until he fought Chris Weidman.
in his title defense against Weidman, Silva made the mistake of goofing around inside the octagon and paid the price for it. However, one loss was not going to stop Silva’s journey to greatness as he came back to regain his throne at the middleweight division in a rematch against Weidman and what happened next changed the course of the history for Silva.
The rematch between Silva and Weidman was highly anticipated. Although Weidman got his hands raised on the first encounter, many fans believed it happened because Silva was playing games inside the octagon. However, Weidman proved them wrong as he started strong in the rematch. It’s safe to say that he did enough damage to win the first round. However, the fight ended when Weidman checked a leg kick from Silva, breaking Silva’s left leg in half from the chin. The whole arena and millions of fans watching around the world were shocked to see Silva howling in pain as he was taken out of the arena.
It was heartbreaking for the fans to see Silva snap his leg in half at UFC 168. Silva fractured both the Tibia and Fibula, in his left leg during the fight. That was not the first time Silva had thrown a leg kick and his opponent checked it. unfortunately, the force behind the kick was enough to snap the leg in half when Silva’s leg collided with Weidman’s chin.
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Fortunately, Silva did not suffer an injury close to his knee joint or ankle joint, in which case it would have been even worse. Either way that horrific sight made the fan wondered whether they would ever see Silva inside the UFC octagon again.
After the horrific leg injury inside the octagon, Silva stayed away from the sport for more than 2 years. A titanium rod was surgically implanted to repair Silva’s leg. Although fans hoped Silva would heal and come back to the sports, nobody could imagine how.
Finally, the former middleweight champion made his UFC return against one of the most polarizing personalities at the time, Nick Diaz and what a fight it was. After 5 entertaining rounds, silva won the fight via decision, making a triumphant comeback, which at one point did not look feasible. However, Silva was never the same afterward.
After a successful comeback to MMA, Silva lost his next two fights against Michael Bisping and Daniel Cormier. Although the Bisping fight was a very close one and he took the fight against Cormier on 2 days’ notice, the aura of invincibility around Silva was fading away.
Well, Silva’s nightmare came into reality again when he fought Jared Cannonier in Brazil on UFC 237. Cannonier went after the left leg of Silva from the very beginning landing some brutal kicks. in the final seconds of the first round, Silva dropped on the ground in pain when he absorbed a leg kick on his left leg from Cannonier. Fortunately, this time the injury was not as severe as the first time. However, the fight was stopped as Silva was not able to continue after that.
Anderson Silva always claimed that it is all about putting a great show for the fans and he followed his words from the very beginning of his career to the end. From dancing his way into the ring to knocking out his opponent in a spectacular manner, Silva has done it all. Even after his injury, he has given us some memorable fights such as Silva vs Diaz, Silva vs Bisping, and Silva vs Adesanya. It’s uncertain whether The Spider will ever step into the octagon again, but what else can we ask from him?
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