Anderson Silva offered to save UFC 151, help others on fight card

LAS VEGAS, NV - NOVEMBER 30: Mixed martial artist Anderson Silva arrives at the Fighters Only World Mixed Martial Arts Awards 2011 at the Palms Casino Resort November 30, 2011 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Chael Sonnen wasn't the only person who stepped up to the plate and offer his services in an effort to salvage UFC 151 after Dan Henderson's injury sent the Labor Day weekend mixed martial arts (MMA) event in a downward spiral.

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Middleweight Champion, Anderson Silva, also offered to save the event, which was in dire need of a headlining bout after Jon Jones refused to take a short notice fight against the self-proclaime "Gangster" from West Linn, Oregon.

The Light Heavyweight champion has been the recipient of non-stop heat for turning down the Sonnen fight from fighters, media and fans alike; however, Silva says -- though he feels Jones could have accepted the fight -- he and his coaches had to do what was best for them:

"You did your entire preparation focused on one guy. When they replace a guy it changes a bit. I thought he could fight Chael, but it's his call to make. He trained focused on Dan Henderson. His team thought it was better for him not to fight."

So why would the pound-for-pound best fighter in the world, fresh off his tenth straight title defense two months prior -- who only fights once or twice a year and doesn't necessarily need a payday -- step up to the plate on such short notice?

According to "Domingao do Faustao," a popular program on Brazil's biggest TV network, Rede Globo (via Tatame), apart from wanting to help out his employer in a desperate time of need, it seems "The Spider" was looking out for the rest of the fighters who were lined up to compete on the card that would not be getting a paycheck should the event be canceled.

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"When I heard it, I called Dana (White) and said I'd fight on the light heavyweight division although I wasn't trained. Besides the big fight there are other fighters relying on that. I worried about the because I've been through that in smaller events."

Despite Silva's offer, the UFC chose to scrap the card, leaving many fans and fighters disappointed and mad as hell.

After a whirlwind 24 hours, Vitor Belfort was tapped to tangle with Jon Jones in the UFC 152 main event on Sept. 22, 2012. Belfort, a middleweight, accepted the bout after several others, including Lyoto Machida and Mauricio Rua, turned down the world title opportunity.

Nevertheless, much like Sonnen before him, one can't look passed Silva's noble gesture in offering his last second services to save an event that had 20 other mixed martial artists (MMA) ready to earn a much-needed payday.

Doesn't sound like a diva. At all.

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