Who is the greatest UFC middleweight in history?
It’s hard to make a case against former 185-pound titleholder Anderson Silva, who holds multiple division records including most finishes (11), most knockouts (8), most knockdowns landed (13), most title fight wins (11), total fight night bonuses (12), and longest win streak (13).
Israel Adesanya holds just one middleweight record: Longest average fight time (17:49).
There’s more to the discussion than just statistics, but it appears the Hall of Fame “Spider” no longer wants “The Last Stylebender” to consider himself to be the greatest of all time, particularly in the wake of his championship loss to Sean Strickland in the UFC 293 main event last weekend in Sydney.
“I’m the one in charge of this s—t here, and you’re not going to open your mouth again to compare yourself to me in this s—t,” Silva wrote in a since-deleted Instagram caption (transcribed by Sherdog.com). “Do you understand? I’m the one in charge of this s—t here.”
The post now sports a handful of menacing emojis.
“They’re two great fighters from two different eras,” former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping said on YouTube. “They did get to fight one another and of course Israel won, but as I said before, you can’t really look at that fight too much. You can’t really give it too much weight, and I know that sounds like an insult to Israel Adesanya. That’s not what I’m doing. They’re both incredible. I’m fans of them both. Right now, the greatest middleweight of all time without question is Anderson Silva, but Israel Adesanya is still only 34 years old. The man is still in his prime, and he’s fighting every few months.”
Adesanya (24-3) beat Silva (34-11, 1 NC) by unanimous decision at UFC 234 but it should be noted that Silva was 44 years old at the time and already on a rapid decline, at least in terms of cage fighting (Adesanya was 30). “The Spider” was released from UFC the following year and moved on to the world of boxing.