UFC legend Anderson Silva says a 170lbs matchup against Conor McGregor fell through and he now wants Anthony Pettis at 185lbs instead.
Silva and McGregor seemed to have agreed to a catchweight bout on social media a few months ago, but nothing came out it and Silva turned his attention to Pettis instead. Silva and Pettis went back-and-forth on social media a few months ago about a potential matchup between the two future UFC Hall of Famers, but UFC president Dana White quickly shot it down. That hasn’t stopped both men from continuing to display interest in the matchup, with Pettis reaching revealing he has been busy during quarantine watching fight tape on “The Spider” in anticipation of a potential bout between the two strikers.
Silva, too, seems to really want this fight. Speaking to Combate recently, Silva explained how a fight against McGregor fell apart and why the Pettis fight makes sense.
“UFC owes me a super fight by contract. Conor (McGregor) called me out right after my fight with (Israel) Adesanya. Our team talked to his team and we agreed upon a bout at (170lbs), but something happened and UFC decided to not make it. Then Anthony Pettis proposed that super fight, and I liked it because he was already a champion who has impressive knockouts. Of course, it would be a great super fight,” Silva said (via Sherdog).
“At this point of my career and for all my legacy it doesn’t make any sense to face new talents that are entering the game non. I don’t want to be a ‘step’ for the new generation. I want to face relevant champions for the sport. And definitely Pettis is a great challenge that will make me train a lot,” Silva said, adding that a Pettis fight would take place at 185lbs.
At age 45, Silva is currently the oldest fighter on the UFC roster and he has struggled in recent years to re-live his championship form. Silva is coming off of two straight losses against Jared Cannonier and Israel Adesanya, and he hasn’t won a fight since beating Derek Brunson in 2017. Still, he remains one of the most accomplished MMA fighters of all time. As for Pettis, he’s coming off of a decision win over Donald Cerrone. While he has not competed at 185lbs before, he has fought as high as 170lbs in the UFC.
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