Bellator middleweight contender Gegard Mousasi praised UFC legend Anderson Silva but says he “tarnished his legacy” by hanging on too long.
Silva will go down as one of the greatest MMA fighters of all time, but he is no longer the consensus GOAT. After starting his UFC career with 16 straight wins — which is still a company record to this day — Silva has gone 1-6, 1 NC as he’s struggled in the limelight of his career to get his hand raised. Since defeating Stephan Bonner in 2012, Silva’s only win is a controversial decision over Derek Brunson, with a No Contest against Nick Diaz.
Silva is now 45 years old and the oldest fighter on the UFC roster. That’s why UFC president Dana White and Silva have both confirmed that his fight against Uriah Hall at UFC Vegas 12 this Saturday will be his last with the promotion. Many fans and media have criticized Silva for continuing to keep fighting despite all the losses and injuries, and it looks like he is finally listening to them. But it may be too late to save his legacy.
Another all-time great is Mousasi, who fights Douglas Lima at Bellator 250 on Thursday. Speaking ahead of his fight, Mousasi was asked his opinion on Silva’s place in MMA.
“He had a great career. I think in his prime he looked unbeatable. He provided a lot of memorable fights. He’s definitely a legend of the sport,” Mousasi said (via MMAFighting.com).
“Maybe continued a little bit longer than he should have, tarnished his legacy just at the end. But in his prime, and that’s what people are going to remember him as. Definitely one of the greatest.”
Silva is going in the UFC Hall of Fame one day regardless, but there are likely many in the MMA community who feel the same way about Silva that Mousasi does. Yes, he is an all-time great, but the tail-end of his career when compared to what other potential GOAT contenders like Georges St-Pierre and Khabib Nurmagomdov is night and day. Now let’s see if he can turn back the clock and get one more back this weekend against Hall.
Do you agree with Gegard Mousasi that Anderson Silva tarnished his legacy?