Wanderlei Silva is, and always will be, one of MMA’s most beloved fighters, but after a 27 second KO loss to Chris Leben tonight at UFC 132 it may be that now is the time for his legendary career to come to an end.
“People love him so much because of the way he fights and his style and the kind of person he is, but… probably the end of the road for Wanderlei,” Dana White admitted at the post-fight press conference.
It’s hard to disagree with that assessment when you look at the facts. Silva has now been knocked out cold in four of his last eight fights, and has only won two times in six visits to the Octagon.
While a move to middleweight an a decision win over Michael Bisping last year offered a glimour of hope, how quickly and easily he was dismantled tonight indicates that he simply doesn’t have the chin to get into the all-out wars that defined his career anymore.
It will be interesting to see what ‘The Axe-Murderer’ himself has to say about all this though.
In many ways it’s reminiscent of another MMA legend Chuck Liddell, who coincidentally was in attendance tonight. He too still had the hunger to fight, but after one too many KO’s the penny finally dropped that he really had no option but to hang up his gloves.
I can see Silva begging Dana White for another chance, but based on his comments tonight he may have a hard time convincing the UFC president to grant that wish.
“The guy has nothing left to prove. He’s a warrior. People love him all over the world. I just don’t want to see…that happen to him anymore.”