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Anderson Silva doesn’t rule out return to MMA for final fight, eyes Japan show

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Anderson Silva doubts you last saw him in MMA competition.

Since parting ways with the UFC in November 2020, Silva has dedicated himself to his boxing career with recent victories over combat sports veterans Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. and Tito Ortiz. He will next fight YouTube star Jake Paul on October 29 in Glendale, Arizona.

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Silva was asked on Wednesday Hour of MMA if his MMA days were indeed over and the 46-year-old responded that he had already discussed the possibility of fighting in Japan after his last UFC fight took place at APEX in Las Vegas.

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“When I had my last fight in the UFC, I spoke to Japan about my last fight there,” Silva said. “Because it makes sense.

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“I took my first title belt in Japan, in Shooto. Maybe I will fight in Japan, my last fight, to prove my respect for the people in Japan and also for my fans in Japan. Let’s see, I don’t know.”

Prior to his legendary UFC title, Silva was a standout fighter in Japan, winning the Shuto middleweight title in 2001 and then bringing his style to the acclaimed PRIDE promotion. He last fought in Japan at the all-star Pride FC: Shockwave 2004, which featured Fedor Emelianenko and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira in the main event, along with Wanderlei Silva, Dan Henderson, Takanori Gomi, Jens Pulver, Mirko Cro Cop and Mark Hunt.

Given his history of performing in the country, it’s understandable that she holds a special place in his heart.

“Maybe my last fight is MMA,” Silva said. “I think my last fight is MMA in Japan.”

“I talked to RIZIN, talked to different companies, to do a show there. I do not care [size of] shows, big or not. Because when I started in Shooto it was a small show, very good and it made me so happy because at that time I just went there and did my best and I showed my respect for my country, my teachers and its academy. I feel like I can do it again and end this part of my life without having to think about coming back to do something. No, when I’m done, I’ll be done. I just close the door. This is part of my past, thank you, and I’m leaving.

Silva believes that he will stop fighting before the age of 50, which gives him a few more years to explore the possibilities of different martial arts. He will turn 48 next April.

What follows is his highly anticipated boxing matchup with Paul, a fight that pits one of MMA’s most beloved icons against a social media darling that continues to draw resistance from die-hard fight fans. Silva downplayed MMA’s relationship to boxing, noting that it was important for him to prove that he belonged to an entirely new field of competition.

“Everyone thinks I represent the MMA community in this fight,” Silva said. “No, for me it is something more. I think I need to show respect to the boxing community. Of course, many say: “You represent MMA. You need to defeat this guy.” I say, guys, listen, a fight is a fight. I don’t think about it because everyone has their own path and my MMA journey ended when I stopped fighting in the UFC.

“I no longer need to represent the MMA community because people know how I worked for the MMA community. Now I have to prove my respect to the boxing community and I’m trying to do it.”

So far, Silva has received a lot of love from the boxing world. After his June 2021 decision win over Chavez Jr., he recalled boxing superstar Canelo Alvarez talking to him and signing his gloves.

“Canelo told me something very important,” Silva said. “Anderson, you’ve proven why you’re here and I respect you.” I’ll try. Every day I try to do my best, because boxing is a different sport, and when a legend, Canelo, comes to you and says something very important to you, you start to feel that you need to be respected and done. everything possible more and more. in boxing.”

Earlier this year, Silva lambasted the UFC for doing a poor job of honoring the legacy of veteran fighters like himself, but for now, he seems solely focused on ending his career on a high note and making the most of his newfound career flexibility. .

“I’m happy all the time,” Silva said. “Every time I train and fight, I am so happy because God gave me this gift when I was born. Every day when I wake up, I just try to enjoy the energy, the strength that I have, to keep doing something special that I really love. Of course, at different times I was not so happy – because everyone knows why – but now I am in control of my own life and my professional life in martial arts. I can do anything and no one can control me, no one can say, “You can’t do this.” No, you don’t. You are too old for this.

“Of course it makes me happier because I have a contract with a big company for many, many years and I am stuck [from] do something more. But that’s the past, now it’s about the future, about my legacy, and I continue to do my best in boxing and other sports. I think after the fight with Jake I will go to Dubai to start training jiu jitsu with my jiu jitsu coach Ramon Lemos, to participate in the tournament and I am so excited to keep fighting, to keep putting my soul into training and testing. me, my mind, my body.”


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