Friday, August 31, 2012

Anderson Silva thinks Jon Jones "could have fought" Chael Sonnen, talks about offer to fight at UFC 151

By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

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Anderson Silva opened up this week about the UFC 151 situation, and his own offer to step in when Jon Jones turned down a fight with Chael Sonnen. The topic came up from a fan during an appearance on "Domingao do Faustao," a program on Brazil's largest network, Rede Globo, where he was being honored.

"You have a whole camp preparing to fight a specific athlete," Silva responded regarding Jones (via Sherdog.com). "When the opponent changes, the preparation changes a bit. I thought he could have fought Chael, but it's his decision. He prepared to fight Dan Henderson. The whole team thought it was best not to fight."

"When I heard the event might be canceled, I called [UFC President] Dana White and said I would fight in the light heavyweight division against someone who also wasn?t training for the event. Besides the main fight, the event had many other fighters who depended on it. I worried about that, because I have lived through situations like this in smaller events."

Penick's Analysis: There are those who believe Silva's willingness to step up for UFC 151 hurts Jones' case for turning down a fight on eight day's notice, but they are two very different situations. Silva was willing to step up against a fighter out of his division who wasn't training for this event, with no title on the line and a clear understanding that it was such a late notice fight. For Jones, he would have been in a somewhat similar situation against Sonnen, with one very important difference: his title would have been on the line. Now, you can take that as a valid excuse or not, but it is a distinction between the two situations. Still, had they not canceled the event, it would have been great to see Silva step up against someone on a week's notice like that.

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/UFC_2/article_14245.shtml

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