Chris Weidman has had some extra time to look back on his MMA career as he recovers from a nasty leg break suffered at UFC 261. The time that Weidman has spent recovering and plotting his return to the cage has led him to have a powerful conversation with former rival, Anderson Silva.
Once upon a time, Weidman was an undefeated contender who was rapidly climbing the UFC middleweight ranks. His success eventually earned him a shot at Silva, who was the 185-pound champion at that time and had won 16-straight UFC fights before their eventual matchup at UFC 162. As we all know, Weidman clipped Silva with a sneaky punch in the second round and knocked him out cold. It was the first time “Spider” had suffered defeat inside of the Octagon.
In the highly-anticipated rematch at UFC 168 Silva was hoping to reclaim his belt and right his only UFC wrong. Unfortunately, Silva launched a leg kick in the second round that was checked by Weidman and left “Spider” with a gnarly leg break (see it HERE). Ironically, it’s the same injury Weidman suffered against Uriah Hall earlier this year at UFC 261.
Until now, Weidman really didn’t understand the severity of breaking his leg from a kick and what Silva had gone through so many years ago. During the debut episode of his “Won’t Back Down” podcast Weidman reminisced about his fight with Silva and finally issued an apology to “Spider” for the way everything went down (video shown above courtesy of ESPN MMA).
“This is Anderson Silva. My leg looked like Anderson Silva’s,” Weidman said about his injury suffered at UFC 261. “What the hell. There’s no way that’s my leg right now. Then all of a sudden the pain is coming in.
“And I remember when it happened with you. I didn’t know your leg broke as soon as it happened. I thought you were just in pain. I circle around and I remember hearing this screaming like someone was being murdered. Then I came over and saw you holding your leg. I could not believe it.
“As time went on I tried to get in touch with you that week. I felt terrible about it. But as time went on you kind of forget. I feel terrible now because now I understand the pain that you went through. All the trials and tribulations you went through. It just makes me empathize with you so much more with those situations. And to be honest I’ve never even said this out loud, but but it’s been on my mind really since this happened. I want to apologize to you.”
This may not seem like a big deal but Weidman and Silva formed quite the rivalry back in the day. Also, the rematch that Silva suffered the leg injury in occurred all the way back in 2013. It took a similar injury for Weidman to come to grips with the past and finally extend his condolences to Silva.
Pretty powerful stuff. Hopefully Weidman can make his own return to the Octagon just like Silva did, who competed seven more times after recovery from his own leg injury.