The MMA Life The MMA Hour: Episode 319 (w/ RDA, Kavanagh, VanZant & Mitrione in studio, and more) – YouTube Video update MMA
The most talked about free agent signing was finally completed yesterday as the UFC inked former Pride Champion Wanderlei Silva to a contract. Silva wasted no time sending a message to his fellow fighters, ?I want to issue a warning to the other fighters out there: you need to train hard, because ?The Axe Murderer? is here.?
Silva recently moved to the States and landed in Las Vegas, Nevada, where he looks to resume his MMA career with Extreme Couture, the new training facility that current UFC Heavyweight Champion Randy Couture opened to help MMA fighters perfect their craft.
The initial report was that Silva was there strictly to assist Couture prepare for his upcoming bout with Gabriel Gonzaga at UFC 74. However, the more time that Silva trained there the more validity was given to the rumor that Silva had a falling out with Chute Boxe and may be leaving the team that he not only trained with during the most successful years of his career, but helped build as well.
Regardless of where he trains out of, Silvia made it perfectly clear on Friday what his intentions are as he returns to the Octagon, “Many fighters have a dream of fighting for the UFC, and as a champion for six years in Japan my dream has always been to have the UFC belt,” Silva stated. “Today, I’m one step closer to this goal.”
But how does his new goal affect his relationship with current Top Ranked LHW, and former Chute Boxe training partner, Mauricio Shogun Rua? For years, the two had a mutual understanding that they would never fight each other not only because they trained together, but also the fact the Silva took Shogun under his wing. Now that they are no longer training partners, representing the same gym, it will be interesting to see how their relationship is affected by Silva?s current aspirations.
For over the past two years, it was strongly felt amongst the MMA community that, even though he didn?t own a belt, Shogun was the best 205lb. fighter in the world. Chuck Liddell monopolized the UFC belt and solidified himself atop the Light Heavyweight rankings. During this same time period Shogun was under contract with Pride FC, and since Silva owned the belt there, Shogun would never get an opportunity to challenge for a title.
Understanding this dilemma, Shogun decided to make the move to the UFC where is scheduled to fight Forrest Griffin at UFC 76. Hoping to finally get his day in the sun, seeing as how it is long overdue, has Silvia thrown a wrench into his old training partner?s plans?
Based off of MMAWeekly?s Light Heavyweight Rankings, the UFC current have the top five fighters in the world under contract, including seven of the top ten. With all this talent at his disposal, will UFC President Dana White eventually look to pit former training brothers against one another? Will they agree to face each other? If so, this fight would change the entire dynamic within the LHW division; the entire weight class is fair game.
White knows that the possibilities, and the high quality of fights are endless ?We got him now. Big fights coming baby, big fights, ?he enthusiastically stated after signing Silva.
Silva knows that expectations are high, and he is not running away from them. White said that Silva, ?grabbed my arm and looked me in the eyes like one of his pre-fight staredowns and he said ?I?m gonna fight so good for you, you?re gonna see the best fights ever from Wanderlei Silva.??
Indeed, The Axe Murderer is here, but will he be seeing Shogun during his stay?
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