Erick Silva is recognized as one of the very best young welterweights in the UFC but has had mixed results in his past six fights, going 3-3. So, when he got the offer to face the surging Matt Brown, who has ridden a six-fight win streak to the top of the rankings, the Brazilian didn’t hesitate to accept.
“I accepted right away,” Silva tells Cagewriter.
“After my last fight [a KO win over Takenori Sato in February], it was one of the first times when I just kept training. I was already motivated to fight again when my manager called and told me about the offer to fight Brown.”
Brown was originally scheduled to fight former champion Carlos Condit in March before an injured back forced him out of the contest. Now, in his return bout, he’ll take on Silva. “The Immortal” has admitted that someone like Silva – who is as good as anyone in the world, but also doesn’t have name recognition yet – wasn’t his top choice to fight next.
Brown isn’t in the habit of turning down fights, either, however, and so he too was happy to get back into the Octagon. Silva doesn’t act as if he’s insulted by Brown’s words.
The black belt likes the matchup for himself and believes he and Brown’s similar styles will make for an exciting fight. “It’s ok that he’s disappointed to fight me,” Silva says.
“Every fighter expects to fight someone with a better ranking. It’s normal that he was disappointed but I’m really happy that he accepted it because it will be a great fight. We are both aggressive fighters and no matter the result, the audience will have a great time.”
“Indio” hopes to have a great time himself, of course. Should Silva managed to stop Brown’s momentum, he will deserve a top ten ranking.
Silva admits that beating Brown would be a boon to his career and ranking, but also clarifies that he fights for himself, not for titles. “Of course, this is an idea in my head because if I beat a higher-ranked guy, it puts me in great position to for the title. But, I’m really calm right now,” he says.
“My main focus is the fight with Matt Brown. It doesn’t matter if I fight for a belt or not, I just have to win.”
Winning may be especially hard for Silva because he’ll be fighting on Brown’s home court, so to speak, in Ohio. Silva himself has fought for the UFC in his native Brazil against visitors so he understands the ins and outs of home field advantage.
That said, he knows that he’ll feel right at home inside the cage once the door closes, no matter what city or country he’s in. “I’m cool with that,” Silva says of fighting near Brown’s home.
“The audience can influence things and I know people will be cheering for Matt Brown. But, when the door is closed, there will only be two fighters in there and everybody else doesn’t matter. “