Back in early 2009, Thiago Silva was an undefeated Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Light Heavyweight prospect who was being talked about as potentially a future 205-pound world champion.
Lyoto Machida derailed the Brazilian's hype train, however, scoring a devastating first round knockout at UFC 94 with just one second remaining on the clock. "The Dragon" would go onto defeat Rashad Evans in his next fight to win the belt, while Silva got mired in mediocrity and inhuman urine.
Silva owned up to his mistakes, served his suspension and made changes to his training regimen, leaving American Top Team (ATT) and heading up the road to join the Blackzilian camp, which is located in Delray Beach, Florida. He said the change of scenery would "make all the difference" and, so far, he might be onto something if his submission win over Stanislav Nedkov is any indication.
Rather than unload punches just for the sake of unloading punches, Silva wisely spotted and opening in the third round and exploited it, securing an uncharacteristic takedown and then working for a slick arm triangle choke that earned him his first victory inside the Octagon since mid-2009 (Keith Jardine).
And $40,000 extra in bonus money.
Silva was "very happy" with his performance and you can hear it in his voice as he explains how he emerged victorious in China. You know?
For more on the fight between Thiago Silva vs. Stanislav Nedkov click here and here. And to check out complete UFC on Fuel TV 6: "Franklin vs. Le" event results and coverage click here.