One man that doesn’t want to hear any of that talk is No. 1 UFC middleweight contender Chris Weidman. He is slated to square off with Silva in the UFC 162 main event on July 6 in Las Vegas.
He knows people really want to see fights like St-Pierre vs. Silva or Silva vs. Jones, but all Weidman has to say about that, at least according to UFC president Dana White, is sorry I’m gonna upset your apple cart.
“I talked to Chris Weidman myself. Guy looks me right in the eye and says, ‘I'm telling you, I apologize that I'm going to (expletive) up all your superfights,’” said White following Saturday night’s UFC 158 in Montreal.
Weidman is undefeated in his nine professional fights, including five trips to the Octagon.
A student of former UFC welterweight champion Matt Serra – falling under the Brazilian Jiu-jitsu lineage of Renzo Gracie – Weidman has a strong submission game, but is also known for his knockout power and vicious ground and pound; not to mention he was a two-time Division I All-American wrestler in college.
In short, he is a well-rounded fighter; perhaps one of the most complete fighters that Silva has ever faced. The only thing he really lacks is experience, which he’s bolstered to some degree by amassing more than half his fights to this point in his career under the brightest lights in the MMA world, defeating the likes of Demian Maia and Mark Munoz.
It’s a big step up – for him or anyone else – to face the man regarded as the top pound-for-pound fighter on the planet, but Weidman isn’t lacking for confidence and believes he can make a mess of the superfights that the UFC has penciled in for the coming months and years.
If he defeats Silva, those superfights all go away.
“If you take Anderson Silva out of the mix, the superfights are all gone,” admitted White.
And that is exactly Weidman’s plan.
“He says, ‘I'm gonna (expletive) up all your superfights and I'm gonna be your next champion,’” White continued, relaying what Weidman told him. “’But what I will do for you is I'll give him an immediate rematch in Madison Square Garden as soon as he loses.'
“It's verbatim what the guy said to me.”
St-Pierre – one of the men whose financial future could take a hit if Weidman follows through on destroying the superfights – doesn’t doubt his friend.
St-Pierre trains often with the Renzo Gracie camp alongside Weidman, and he believes that people shouldn’t be too quick to write his sometime training partner off.
“Chris Weidman, don't count him beaten. He's amazing guy,” said St-Pierre on Saturday night. “I know the odds are not in his favor, but you could have a surprise.”
It might be a surprise to everyone else, but not to Chris Weidman. As far as he’s concerned, the fight that he has longed for is his for the taking and he’ll finally be the guy to derail the Anderson Silva bullet train.