LAS VEGAS — We are likely months away from knowing if Anderson Silva will indeed return to the octagon following his now infamous leg injury, but there's at least one UFC champ who feels he should walk away from the sport.
The sidelined lightweight champion Anthony Pettis feels there's nothing left for the "Spider" to prove.
"I hope he doesn’t [come back] because why?" Pettis told Yahoo Sports Tuesday night at a Monster headphones event as part of the 2014 International Consumer Electronics Show. "His legacy is already fulfilled. What’s he going to come back and win the belt? He’s done what he’s going to do in the sport."
While he wasn't cageside at UFC 168 for Weidman vs. Silva 2, Pettis was watching the fight as it happened live from his Milwaukee sports bar.
"I couldn’t even watch it," Pettis added. "It was disgusting. It sucks because he’s one of the greatest of all-time. He’s the Muhammad Ali of MMA and the way he went out sucks."
Similar to Silva, Pettis is currently working his way back from injury. "Showtime" was scheduled to defend his UFC lightweight championship at UFC on Fox 9 last month but had to pull out from his fight vs. Josh Thomson after undergoing knee surgery to repair a torn posterior cruciate ligament (PCL).
"I have no pain," Pettis said on his December operation. "I didn't even take pain pills. Now it's just a waiting process. You have to wait for it to heal back up. The hardest thing to build back up is the confidence. Going in there [the octagon] and knowing nothing is wrong.
If the injury-prone Pettis was ever out for a prolonged period of time, a la the now former UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz, he would be OK with vacating his title.
"I feel for him," Pettis said about Cruz, who both got their start in the WEC. "Injuries are a part of the game and for someone to be out that long, I understand. But if I’m out for a year, give someone else a chance. I was waiting for the title for a long time, so I understand that."