Another weekend of fisticuffs has come and gone as UFC 237 blew the roof Jeunesse Arena last Sat. night (May 11, 2019) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Plenty of fighters were left licking their wounds, including B.J. Penn, who suffered his seventh straight defeat, this time at the hands of Clay Guida. And Rose Namamjunas, who was knocked out thanks to a vicious slam by Jessica Andrade, losing her women’s Strawweight title in the process.
But which fighter is suffering from the worst post-fight hangover, now 48 hours removed from the show?
Coming into his bout against Jared Cannonier, “The Spider” was looking to get back into the win column after coming up short in his previous contest against Israel Adesanya. The 44-year-old legend also looked to establish he has plenty left to offer the fight game, and perhaps prove that UFC extending his contract was worth the promotion’s while.
Unfortunately for one of the all-time greats, he didn’t get the chance to show it because the fight ended on a thunderous kick delivered by Cannonier right on Silva’s knee in the first round, sending him crumbling down to the mat in visible pain and agony.
And I will admit, I am still among the few who say Chris Weidman’s second win over “The Spider” was a fluke injury, but this was not that. This was a blow delivered by an opponent that caused the unfortunate damage and earned him the win.
As for what’s next for the former pound-for-pound great, the consensus is that he should start collecting his 401K. And it’s hard to argue at this point for many reasons. For one, at age 44 there really isn’t much for Silva to prove or accomplish inside the Octagon. He’s been around the block a few times and has done things inside the cage that most can only dream of. His legacy is cemented, despite his last five tumultuous years.
Plus, the contenders are only getting younger, faster and stronger, and though his body still looks like that of a 25-year-old, his injury this weekend proved that it has a lot of miles on it that are now visible to the naked eye.
”Until the limit, pain is your friend. It shows you’re not dead yet,” Silva wrote on Instagram (via MMA Fighting). “They say that great symbols become great targets. Maybe. But the most important thing is not to victimize yourself. If you fall, get up. If it’s broken, fix it. No giving up or thinking that you can’t because you lost one battle.
”The saying is, I’m going until the end and the more they pressure me, the more I’ll want to to go until the end. There’s nothing more wild than feeling sorry for yourself. An old lion, surrounded by hungry hyenas, crazy to eat him, and he stills fights until death without ever giving up or feeling sorry for himself. And it won’t be different with me. Strength and honor.”
While one must respect and admire the ambition and desire a fighter has to want to keep going, there has to come a time when he or she has to take a look deep down inside and really determine whether his or her body can go on.
Then again, he recently went toe-to-toe with the current interim division champion for 15 minutes, so you can’t blame him if he feels he still has what it takes to keep going.
Silva is definitely in an odd place at the moment, and it will likely be a while before he lets the public know what the future holds for him. But if I were a betting man, I would put coin on him at least finishing out his UFC contract.