Well, on Sunday on UFC Fight Pass, the episode will air.
I had the opportunity to see an advance screening of the episode, and after watching was left with three impressions:
1, Silva was highly agitated for no apparent reason.
2, He didn't really want to fight.
3, One of his coaches is a total cheap-shot artist who deserves to be penalized for escalating and not stopping the incident.
It was Sonnen who made the first physical contact, though that came after a long period of agitation from Silva, who not only spat at Sonnen but gestured wildly at him and invaded Sonnen's personal space.
Sonnen responded by shoving Silva with two hands to the chest and then the fight broke out. It was the first time in TUF history that coaches fought on set, but the worst part was the action of Silva assistant Andre Dito. A one-time Pride fighter, instead of playing the peacekeeper role and putting the combatants apart, Dito got involved himself.
Now clearly, emotions were boiling over. Silva is one of many Brazilians who are outraged by Sonnen's trash talk toward former middleweight champion Anderson Silva and Brazilians in general. Sonnen speaks like a professional wrestler in a bit to hype and bring attention to his fights, but in reality he's a very bright guy who is nothing like the "American Gangster," he portrays himself to be.
Wanderlei Silva, though, seems to have taken most of what Sonnen has said about Brazilians over the last several years seriously and not as a way to hype lucrative fights against fighters such as himself, Anderson Silva and Vitor Belfort.
In a telephone interview with Yahoo Sports on Friday, Sonnen said the fight was "100 percent real and there was nothing fake about it."
But Sonnen also was perplexed and disappointed it occurred.
"It was real unfortunate and it never should have happened," Sonnen said. "It's not a bravado moment in the least. It was a bad moment. It was a negative thing between he and I. It's regrettable. It never should have happened. It never should have turned physical. It's never happened in the past.
"If you watch The Ultimate Fighter at all over the course of the time it's been on the air, you see a lot of situations where the coaches don't care for each other. They bring coaches in who don't like each other and you get a little banter back and forth. But on our very first day, he threatened me and physically shoved me twice."
The episode opens with both teams awaiting Silva's arrival in order to pick the next fight. He was late and said he was at the doctor and got stuck in traffic. But Sonnen said he reeked of alcohol and looked like he hadn't slept the night before.
Sonnen said, "I outed him for being drunk and I don't think he liked that." He added that he thought being outed is what pushed Silva over the edge.
The American also noted that on the day the fight occurred, which happened before a weigh-in, Silva was dressed in fight clothes with a cup on and a mouthpiece, as if he were ready to fight. Sonnen was wearing jeans and flip flops.
The UFC has hyped the brawl relentlessly, hoping to build interest in their July 5 fight at UFC 175 in Las Vegas.
Sunday on UFC Fight Pass, viewers can make up their own minds about the brawl and whether it makes them want to see them fight any more.
- Martial Arts
- Sports & Recreation
- Wanderlei Silva
- Chael Sonnen
- Anderson Silva