For all the naysays that claimed a bout between Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) middleweight titleholder Anderson Silva and former boxing superstar Roy Jones Jr. would never happen, UFC President Dana White has given the potential match up a glimmer of hope.
Dating back to 2008, Silva has stated in the media that his dream fight would be a boxing or mixed martial arts (MMA) contest against one of the most notorious combat sports athletes of all time in Jones Jr.
The 38-year-old has become even more vocal about the issue in recent months and in a surprising move to many, Jones Jr. told TMZ in June that he would "love to" mix it up with the world's pound-for-pound top ranked MMA fighter.
Fans, media and even White brushed off the notion of a crossover fight between the two famed talents; however, in an interview with Ariel Helwani of MMA Fighting on Thursday (July 4, 2013), the UFC's head-honcho revealed that Jones Jr. is flying to Las Vegas, Nevada to watch Silva face Chris Weidman in the UFC 162 main event and discuss a future scrap with "The Spider."
Here's what White had to say:
"It's not that I'm necessarily interested in this, Anderson Silva's the greatest fighter of all time, you know, he's a guy who's never lost in the UFC, I respect him -- he wants to fight Roy Jones. So Roy and I are friends. I called Roy and I said, ‘Listen, you know about this?' He says, ‘I know about it.' I say, ‘You interested?' He says, ‘I'm going to come out to Vegas this weekend.' So Roy and I have been talking and we'll see what happens. I don't know [if the fight will happen]. I don't know. He's coming out and we're going to talk."
This is a fairly sudden turn of events for a fight that was once considered fantasy and a pipe dream for Silva. It's unknown that if the fight were to ever come to fruition if Silva would crossover to the boxing ring or if Jones Jr. would try his hand at MMA.
The potential fight would have been much more compelling about a decade ago when the Jones Jr. was still in his physical prime; however, the 44-year-old hasn't registered a significant win in years.
While more on this story is certain to come in the near future, Silva has much more important things to worry about right now such as a title defense against a young and dangerous prospect in Weidman this Saturday night (July 6, 2013) at UFC 162.
For more news and notes on UFC 162: "Silva vs. Weidman," visit our complete event archive here.