Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Middleweight strikers Anderson Silva and Uriah Hall will duel tonight (Sat., Oct. 31, 2020) at UFC Vegas 12 inside UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada.
It remains to be seen whether or not Silva heads into retirement or continues his career elsewhere, but it would seem this will be his final bout in the UFC. Regardless of his choice, it’s the end of an era. Silva’s decade of dominance may be long past, but “The Spider” made himself an icon inside the Octagon.
As for Hall, is this main event slot a final opportunity to assert himself into the title mix? He’s ranked inside the top 10 and on a win streak already, so perhaps victory could prove the final push that’s long avoided him.
Let’s take a closer look at the keys to victory for each man:
Record: 34-10 (1)
Key Wins: Chael Sonnen (UFC 148, UFC 117). Vitor Belfort (UFC 126), Forrest Griffin (UFC 101), Dan Henderson (UFC 82)
Key Losses: Chris Weidman (UFC 166, UFC 162), Israel Adesanya (UFC 234), Michael Bisping (UFC Fight Night 84), Jared Cannonier (UFC 237)
Keys to Victory: Silva held the Middleweight throne with a fist of iron on the strength of his kickboxing. Silva has famously pulled techniques from a huge variety of martial arts, but ultimately, he’s an expert range striker with brutal counter striking.
Silva may have fallen off a step, but most of his recent losses have come down to one of two factors. In one, his leg falls apart, which ... well, I don’t know that there’s anything anyone can do about that. However, the second flaw is more fixable: volume.
In fights like the Bisping bout — and perhaps even his fight with Adesanya — simply throwing more strikes could have proven a difference-maker. Silva may prefer to counter punch, but everyone knows that now, so he has to stay ahead on the scorecards to force his opponent to take initiative.
Against Hall, Silva should also look to stuff his opponent’s jab. Hall’s jab is his best weapon, but Silva’s Southpaw stance should go a long way in nullifying that tool if he puts his mind to it. If Silva can take away the jab, Hall will be more limited and thus more predictable.
Key Wins: Gegard Mousasi (UFC Fight Night 75), Krzystztof Jotko (UFC Fight Night 116), Antonio Carlos Junior (UFC Fight Night 158), Thiago Santos (UFC 175)
Key Losses: Paulo Costa (UFC 226), Gegard Mousasi (UFC Fight Night 99), Derek Brunson (UFC Fight Night 94), Robert Whittaker (UFC 193)
Keys To Victory: Hall is one of the most dynamic finishers in the sport. He is capable of ending an opponent’s night with a single strike at any point, regardless of how far behind he is — Hall scores come-from-behind knockouts at a scary rate.
Let’s not overcomplicate things: Anderson Silva has a problem with low kicks, and Hall happens to kick quite hard. From the open stance position, Hall should be firing right kicks deep into the thigh of Silva early and often. If Silva is actively checking, show the kick, fire punches, and then kick the thigh.
There’s a real chance nothing else is needed for Hall to win this fight.
Otherwise, Hall has excellent range weapons. He can jab and kick with Silva all night — do it! There’s no reason for Hall to throw himself forward into danger when he can very likely hang back and win this fight on the strength of his athleticism and range kickboxing.
If someone is going to step into a heavy counter shot, let it be the former champion.
This is Anderson Silva’s final UFC fight.
The stakes for Silva are not clearly defined. His legacy as a longtime champion is established ... but his legacy of hanging around past his prime is also pretty clear-cut, as Silva has only won a single bout in his last eight appearances. So, while a knockout over Hall would be awesome and an appropriate way to walk away from UFC, it wouldn’t really change either portion of his career.
As for Hall, the stakes are much higher. He’s trying to drum up interest in a bout with Israel Adesanya ... by insulting Adesanya’s recent competition, who just so happen to be the men that beat Uriah Hall. If we’re to take him seriously as a contender after all these years and tough defeats, Hall simply has to perform here and keep his win streak going. Even then, a top 10-ranked win is required to really break into the title mix, but the alternative is a defeat that ends his current climb.
Remember that MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Vegas 12 fight card this weekend right here, starting with the ESPN+ “Prelims” matches, which are scheduled to begin at 4 p.m. ET, then the remaining main card balance on ESPN+ 7 p.m. ET.
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At UFC Vegas 12, Anderson Silva and Uriah Hall will meet in the main event. Which man will have his hand raised?