RIZIN’s Nobuyuki Sakakibara confirms talks with Anderson Silva for retirement bout: “We’re always open”

By Josh Evanoff - December 22, 2023

RIZIN executive Nobuyuki Sakakibara is down to welcome Anderson Silva to the ring in the future.

Nobuyuki Sakakibara and Anderson Silva

‘The Spider’ has been out of action since he clashed with Jake Paul well over a year ago. Facing off in the main event of a Showtime pay-per-view, Anderson Silva suffered a unanimous decision loss. ‘The Spider’ made a great account of himself in the bout, but an eighth-round knockdown from Paul sealed the defeat.

The loss was his first since leaving the UFC in 2020. While Anderson Silva was dominant in the cage, he’s only appeared in the boxing ring since his release three years ago. However, the Brazilian has admitted that he’s not done competing in MMA. Earlier this summer, the former middleweight champion revealed that he was in talks with a Japanese MMA promotion.

While Anderson Silva never named the company, many considered it to be the Nobuyuki Sakakibara-led RIZIN. Despite the promise of ‘The Spider’ fighting one more time in MMA, the deal seemingly never came together. Months beyond that original interview, the promoter confirmed that he was in touch with the combat sports legend.

Speaking in a recent interview with MMA Fighting, Nobuyuki Sakakibara discussed his dealings with Anderson Silva. There, he revealed that while a deal hasn’t yet come together, he’s open to it. Furthermore, he’s open to more fighters than ‘The Spider’ coming over to RIZIN. Ideally, they would be the final stop for many legendary competitors to make “old school” fans excited.


Anderson Silva

Image via: @spiderandersonsilva on Instagram

Nobuyuki Sakakibara discusses signing Anderson Silva to RIZIN

“Anderson has fought for us – our relationship goes way back,” Nobuyuki Sakakibara said through a translator in a recent interview confirming talks of a deal. “To answer your question, yes, we have spoken, but…you know, for us, if he has some ideas, and if we really want to do something, our doors are always open, we’re always here to listen. If things make sense, we’ll always put something together. We do have a relationship with Anderson. I can’t really talk about details, but if the opportunity is there and if it makes sense, we’re always open to making things happen.” (h/t MMA Fighting)

He continued, “One of our concepts that RIZIN has is to provide a platform for the legendary fighters to perform their final fight, to kind of show them the way out with respect, so that’s definitely one of our concepts. We’re not going to get rid of that concept right away… Our concept always have had that, to reaching out to the legendary fighters. One day we might just put together a matchup that would definitely cater and make the old school fans all excited. There’s definitely a possibility for that in the future.”

What do you make of these comments from RIZIN’s Nobuyuki Sakakibara? Do you want to see Anderson Silva fight in RIZIN? Or do you believe ‘The Spider’ has done enough in fighting?

This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM


Anderson Silva Nobuyuki Sakakibara RIZIN FF