Since receiving a lifetime ban from the NSAC, Wanderlei Silva has taken a very direct, and oftentimes harsh approach when speaking out against the UFC.
While many have been quick to criticize Wanderlei for his recent antics, Chael Sonnen believes that Wanderlei simply isn’t receiving any guidance from his management team.
He spoke to BloodyElbow to discuss Wanderlei’s actions.
I don’t know who is advising Wanderlei and I don’t know who his management team is, if they have a PR arm, but I really disagree with the way he has gone about things. My suspicion is that he’s not getting advice from anywhere. He seems to be making all these moves on his own.”
I really wish he would just slow down. He’s at a weird point in his life; when your career starts coming to an end, and that’s what you’re used to doing every day, it’s hard to deal with. You get used to a certain lifestyle; the working out every day, the interviews and appearances…everybody goes through it.”
As athletes, we go through these life altering changes while we’re still young. Athletes don’t retire at 65. We have to retire much earlier, so I think what we’re all seeing is Wanderlei going through some of these changes that he’s struggling with. He’s still trying to figure out how to navigate them. I don’t know who’s managing him, but the things he’s doing are not things I would advise him to do.”
Most people don’t take the time to do research even though there’s a big opportunity in it when you do. Wanderlei is in a bad spot. He made some bad decisions and all of that, but he still has to deal with it. Time is the only dimension that goes one way, and that’s forward. You can’t go back.”
The world’s a big place and you can’t get stuck in the cracks. Wanderlei is in a crack right now. He and I never get it right. We butt heads, we’re oil and water, but that doesn’t mean he’s not a good guy. I don’t know if he’s a good guy or not; I don’t even know him, but I do know I want him to have a good life. I do know he has a beautiful family and he cares about them. I just think he’s making some bad choices.”
If I could just get him on the phone for 10 minutes, I’d give him some advice. I doubt he’d listen, but I would try to help him. I tried to give him some advice on The Ultimate Fighter, but he didn’t take it. I know if he gave me advice, I’d listen. He’s been in the sport for a long time, and if he was to sit me down and say, ‘Here’s what I regret in my career,’ and whether it was training or diet or taking fights or management or PR, I’d listen, particularly to the stuff that he said I did wrong.”