Photo of UFC 153's Stephan Bonnar by Ethan Miller/Getty Images.
Everyone loves to cheer for the underdog. David versus Goliath. The Spartans versus the Persians. The New York Giants versus the New England Patriots. All are stories of a person or team that no one gave any chance to come out on top when facing an opponent who was heavily favored.
Go ahead and add Stephan Bonnar to the list of would-be heroes when he squares off against Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva at UFC 153 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on Oct. 13, 2012.
"The American Psycho" rolls into the biggest fight of his career against a title holder who will be a -1350 favorite in the Las Vegas odds. If you ask just about anyone in the mixed martial arts (MMA) community, they will tell you that Bonnar doesn't stand a chance. If you ask Michael Bisping, he'll tell you that "The Spider" is not just going to win, but that he will possibly decapitate his challenger in front of the boisterous home crowd.
But, Bonnar isn't letting the naysayers get to him. The Light Heavyweight tough guy has made a name for himself on the back of bloody brawls in the Octagon. He has a reputation for never tapping out. He may not have the most vast skill set in the game, but one thing he isn't is a quitter.
For him, it's the opportunity of a lifetime. Win or lose, he plans on doing what he always does. He's going to give the fans a show:
During an interview with FUEL TV's "UFC Tonight," Bonnar talked about his underdog status. He knows no one is giving him a chance, but he's relishing the opportunity to prove them all wrong. Or, at least go down in flames trying:
"I'm loving it. I am the greatest underdog in UFC history. I am fighting him in his back yard. He is the pound-for-pound best fighter in the UFC. No one is giving me a chance. I love it. I feel like Rocky Balboa. It's like ‘Rocky 1' and ‘Rocky IV' meshed together. It's me, it's time. The ‘American Psycho' is going to get it done."
Not many fighters would ask for a match up against the best fighter in the world, right in his own neighborhood (practically). But, Bonnar isn't most fighters:
"Yeah, I am emotional. This is like a dream fight. Fighting Anderson Silva in his backyard, of course I'm going to be emotional. But, I like the way it turned out. If I am going to fight this guy I want it to be in Brazil, I want it to be in Rio, I want to be the biggest underdog of all time and I want to shock the world."
If he loses, many expect for Bonnar to give a heartfelt retirement speech, afterwards. He's had a good, long run. He's made a ton of fans. He also has a promising future as a commentator, waiting for him on the other side of the cage. It's easy to speculate on what might happen if he loses.
But, what if he wins?
"That is a great dilemma that I would like to be in. If I beat Anderson that's a perfect story book ending. All these years I have been trying to top the Forrest Griffin fight and if I beat Anderson, then it is a chance to do that. But if I beat Anderson, I am sure I will be offered a bunch of dream fights. Do I hang it up after the perfect situation or do I take all these dream fights? We will see. I'd love to be in this situation."