Former longtime UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva is widely considered to be one of the best fighters of all-time.
The Brazilian legend is now 45-years-old, however, and has lost six of his last eight bouts. Many believe that he likely should’ve called it a career years ago and according to “The Spider” himself, he will finally do just that following his upcoming fight against Uriah Hall on Oct. 31.
“This is the last fight,” Silva told MMA Junkie on Tuesday. “For sure, this is the last fight. Probably. I love the sport. I’ve prepared my mind for this. I’ve prepared for fight my entire life, but yes, this is my last fight in UFC.”
While the latter part of his career may lead some to forget the early portion of it, Silva was truly a special fighter during his peak, as evidenced by his 16-fight UFC winning streak between 2006-12 and his dominant reign as 185-pound champion that saw him defend the title a record-setting 10 consecutive times.
After debuting in the UFC in 2006, Silva went on to earn victories over notable names like Rich Franklin. Dan Henderson, Forest Griffin, Demian Maia, Chael Sonnen, Vitor Belfort, and Yushin Okami. He also has 14 wins by stoppage in the octagon.
Following the loss of his title and back-to-back defeats to Chris Weidman in 2013, however, Silva’s career was never the same. He has since suffered defeats to Michael Bisping, Daniel Cormier, Israel Adesanya, and Jared Cannonier, while also failing multiple drug tests.
That portion of Silva’s career obviously can’t be ignored, but the fact remains that when he was at his best, there were few fighters like him, as he consistently created magical moments inside the cage.
It’s not those moments that he’ll miss the most after he fights for the last time later this month, however, but rather the training and preparation that led him to those moments.
“I think (I’ll miss) the training (the most),” Silva said. “Preparing my mind, preparing my body. This I think is most important and I feel sad because I don’t have this anymore. This is the last one.”
In terms of Hall specifically, it seems as if Silva respects his upcoming opponent’s skill set. Ultimately, “The Spider” will simply be looking to put on one more show, something he has done so many times before.
“I can’t say, ‘Oh, this fight goes to the ground, this fight is done in the standup,’” Anderson Silva said. “It’s two good strikers. Uriah’s a very, very athletic guy and has a good technique in the striking and I try to do my best. I try do to the best show for my fans.”