"People get pissed off every time I say this – people are like, 'Who are you?' Unfortunately for people who don't like it, I am the one who makes those decisions. Whether you like it or not, too [expletive] bad."
Those are some heavy words from UFC President Dana White when asked about his desire for Wanderlei Silva to hang them up for good.
White spoke to reporters at the UFC 135 press conference last week in Denver Colorado and did not hold back when it came to how he feels about telling a fighter that HE feels it’s time to hang them up for good.
Wanderlei Silva is one of the most respected and feared fighters in the history if mixed martial arts. From his early days in Vale Tudo, to his dominance in PRIDE, to his current stint in the UFC; Silva has had a storied career. Owner of some of the greatest knockouts in MMA, “The Axe Murderer” is arguably the most popular mixed martial artist of all time.
People talk about fighters having "The Tyson Effect", its safe to say that Wanderlei had that effect with just the mention of his name.
His resume of opponents speaks for itself; Kasushi Sakuraba, Mirko Crocop, Rampage Jackson, Dan Henderson, Tito Ortiz, Vitor Belfort, Chuck Liddell, Rich Franklin, Hidehiko Yoshida, Yuki Kondo......just to name a few.
Could it all come to an end with Cung Le? With a loss, it just might be the end of the road for the future Hall of Famer.
White told mmajunkie.com
"It's one of those things, there's this fine line between telling a guy you've got to hang it up and him actually wanting to hang it up. We'll give him this fight with Cung Le, and we'll go from there.I'm sure you guys know what I said about Wanderlei after his last fight, Wanderlei was really bummed out about it, and he wants another opportunity. He wants to fight.The guy's been around for a long time. I respect him. He's healthy, so we'll give him the shot."
"He knew going into that last fight how I felt about it. The thing with me is, I love Wanderlei. Wanderlie has been awesome ever since he's come to the UFC. You couldn't ask for a nicer guy and a guy who goes in and gives it all. But listen, I don't want to see a guy go in and get hurt. You guys have heard me say it a million times: I don't want to make one dollar of that kind of money. I don't. Otherwise, if that was the case, Chuck Liddell would still be fighting.”
Who would have thought the day would come that Wanderlei Silva would be fighting just to stay employed. It’s hard to believe, or maybe fans just refuse to, that we may be seeing “The Axe Murderer” fight for the last time when he steps into the Octogan to face Cung Le at UFC 139 in San Jose on November 19th.
What do you think maniacs, should head honcho Dana White have the final say when it comes to fighters hanging them up, or should the fighter themselves have the last word?