Last weekend, in the co-main event of UFC 208, former middleweight champion and bona fide MMA legend Anderson Silva took on dangerous middleweight contender Derek Brunson. Despite the propensity for violent finishes shared by both men, this fight ended up being a slow one, as Brunson was hesitant to wade in on the venomous counter-striker Silva, and Silva waited for counter-punching opportunities that were almost non-existent.
In the end, Silva would leave this fight with a unanimous decision win – though many fans and pundits felt the decision should have gone the other way. In the opinion of UFC middleweight champ Michael Bisping, however, it doesn’t matter that Silva won, as the fashion in which he won could ultimately damage is incredible legacy.
“What Anderson was doing was just kind of stalking him down and not doing anything. He was kind of disrespecting everybody there, disrespecting his opponent. At times he grabbed the Thai clinch on Derek Brunson, had the Thai clinch, but didn’t do anything. Didn’t throw an elbow, certainly didn’t throw a knee and he allowed Brunson to just tee off with like 10-, 15-punch combinations to Anderson Silva whilst Anderson just held him. It was just bizarre, and I’m watching this thinking, ‘Anderson’s gonna get knocked out because he’s holding onto this stupid, dumb Thai clinch.’”
“The one time – or the couple of times – where Anderson actually threw something, Brunson turned around and literally ran away from him. You could see he was a little intimidated, he was a little bewildered, he didn’t know quite what to do. All in all, you could see that Anderson was the better fighter, but he just didn’t pull the trigger. He didn’t pull the trigger at all. People were booing in the audience, people were annoyed, people were pissed off. They paid to watch the fantastic Anderson Silva and he just wasn’t delivering.”
“I’m not trying to kick a man while he’s down, I’m really not. I bought the pay-per-view to watch Anderson Silva. Regardless of what’s happened between the two of us, I’m a fan of Anderson Silva, and he still always brings that excitement. Even still, right up until the final bell of the 15 minutes fight you still thought, ‘Hold on, is he gonna pull something amazing out of the bag?’ But he didn’t and what he did was, he allowed Brunson to outwork him so when he went to a decision, everybody thought Derek Brunson was gonna get the decision. Of course, it went to Anderson Silva which was shocking, and I guess maybe you could see an argument for Anderson winning rounds one and two, but it was just a bizarre performance and his legacy is slowly turning into that of somebody that’s – well he’s tarnishing his legacy. Let’s put it like that.”
What do you think of Michael Bisping’s comments on Anderson Silva? Sound off, PENN Nation!
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 2/17/2017.