In regards to his craft, Freddie Roach is synonymous with the phrase "greatest of all time." One of boxing's most storied and well-respected trainers, he's often referred to former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) titleholder Anderson Silva as one of the best pure boxers in all of mixed martial arts (MMA).
Roach has also stayed true to the opinion that Silva grows bored inside the Octagon because of the disparity in boxing talent he opposes. On Monday's edition of The MMA Hour, he touched further on this, along with his opinion on why Silva suffered a loss at UFC 162 to new middleweight champion Chris Weidman.
"The thing is, I think he gets a little bored in there because he's talented, and he seems like he's more talented than a lot of the guys. He is one of the best I've ever worked with. He understands timing and distance really well. I think he could've avoided taking those shots, but again, I'm not sure what his thought process was. I think he was just a little bit lazy and playing around too much."
This isn't much of a stretch and quite frankly, many people who have seen the one-and-a-half-round bout feel the same way. Silva spent more time antagonizing Weidman and treating him the way he did Forrest Griffin than picking him apart. He paid dearly for this.
"My thought on that is that he just plays around too much. I think it's too easy for him sometimes. He just got caught playing around. In this sport, one punch can change things, and this isn't a sport you should actually play."
If anyone can (and will) come back from a loss the magnitude of the main event at UFC 162, it's Anderson Silva. But how he prepares for and ultimately handles his "All American" rematch at UFC 168 will either signify the loss as the end of an era, or a misstep in a hall-of-fame career.
"Obviously a loss is a loss. Regardless of how he lost or why he lost, it's not anyone's fault but your own. It's part of his career, it's part of his life, so we can't say, ‘Well, he wasn't ready for that one,' or, ‘He didn't train for that one.' It is going to be part of his legacy and I think he needs to come back and come back well."
Is the laziness and "playing around" an act, or is Silva truly bored? UFC 168 on Dec. 28 in Las Vegas, Nevada, can't come soon enough.