MMA manager Ali Abdelaziz has stepped in to defend former UFC matchmaker Joe Silva against a bevy of accusations.
Silva, who served as the primary UFC matchmaker for many years, has been under fire over the last week, as a long list of fighters have shared horror stories about working with him, including Eddie Alvarez, Mike Pierce, Roland Delorme, Gray Maynard and Brendan Schaub.
Abdelaziz claims these accusations are untrue, and says it’s cowardly for these fighters to criticize Silva when he’s long departed the UFC.
“I see a lot of things about Joe Silva, and it’s not true,” Abdelaziz told MMA Junkie. “Joe Silva, yes, he was too honest for some of these cowards, and I think it’s very cowardly when a man is no longer even with the company and people come out and talk (expletive) about him.
“The thing is, if you have a problem with Joe Silva, that’s fine. Why didn’t you go public when he was there? Why didn’t you do it? Sean Shelby, too. I talk (expletive) to Sean Shelby all the time. I say it in his face, and he talks (expletive) to me, too. I’m man enough to go to him.”
Abdelaziz continued, praising Silva as a pioneer of MMA.
“Joe Silva, in my opinion, is one of the pioneers of the sport – a (expletive) legend, but he was a little nutty,” Abdelaziz said. “For a guy that’s 5-foot-4 to walk up to Fabricio Werdum when he was the heavyweight champion of the world and go tell him, straight up, he didn’t like some of his fights? I was right there. Rafael Cordeiro was right there, and Joe was talking (expletive) to Werdum in front of his face. He was able to go to people’s face and talk (expletive) to them, and Fabricio laughed at him. He didn’t take it to heart.
“Me and Joe Silva are not best friends, but I’m just tired of people smearing other people for the fighters not handling their career right,” Abdelaziz added. “If you suck, Joe Silva told you that you (expletive) suck. … (but) he did a lot for the sport. You like him, you don’t like him, you have to respect him. It’s OK not to like Joe Silva. It’s OK to (expletive) Joe Silva. But you have to respect Joe Silva. If he hurt your feelings, you’re in the wrong (expletive) business. That’s it.”
What do you think of these comments from Ali Abdelaziz? Where do you stand on Joe Silva?