UFC Fighters Blast Former Matchmaker Joe Silva; Chael Sonnen Defends Him

Joe Silva and Dana White

Former UFC matchmaker Joe Silva has been the target of a flurry of negative stories from fighters who were less than happy with the way they were treated by him over the years.

Among those who took aim at Silva were former lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez and retired heavyweight Brendan Schaub.

Eddie Alvarez

“Ok ok …. so I am in the restaurant of a hotel a few weeks after the Anthony Petis fight eating by myself and next to me is Joe Silva with a group of buddies and I believe Sean Shelby they are having some drinks . I never interacted with Joe but I took the time to introduce myself.

“Next I ask who my next opponent could possibly be and half joking half serious ask for the champion if he’s available …. Joe took the opportunity to tell me with the way I am fighting I’ll never get a title shot as long as he’s around , they all laugh ….

“At this point I am completely embarrassed , I want to hurt him but I just joined this promotion and this guy pretty much makes the rules , The funny part was he was standing and I could of swore he was fully seated . So I took the high road and went to my room in a rage.

“I get a call a few weeks later from Dana not Joe asking for the RDA fight …. I thought wow this one must of went over Joes Head , Joe 4 foot a lot of things Do . So I get the fight I wanted and Joe didn’t want . I KO RDA and win the world title in the 1st rnd.

“As I make my way out of the ring and in the back guess who is the first guy standing there? Yes Joe. No congrats, no good job just a bitter angry small little man. I said nothing, nothing needed to be communicated, I just wink. Success is how you destroy your enemies.”

Brendan Schaub

“Joe Silva was a savage, man. A f*cking savage. He was a guy who was on Sherdog forums, was a big fan, and then got this role as the matchmaker of the UFC, dealing with the toughest guys in the world. Joe Silva is 5-foot-1. He’s this kind of little Sherdog forum troll who got some power in the UFC. He had a lot of power, controlled a lot of guys’ destinies. Got drunk on ego. He was a motherf*cker, man. … I would assume every fighter has a Joe Silva story. I remember when I fought Crop Cop, as I’m walking out, he goes, ‘You better not treat him like your f*cking friend. Got out there and knock him out.’ It’s like, ‘All right, thanks, dude. You’re 5-foot, though.’”

Read what others fighters had to say about Silva below.

Jon Fitch

“Extra special asshole.

“We had just renegotiated a new contract and Joe was pissed I was getting a pay bump. I only had one loss to GSP at the time. Joe said fine, you’ll get this number but as soon as you lose we are going to cut you and sign you back for half as much #JoeSilvaStories.”

Gray Maynard

“I used to hear that speech.Then I gave him a “fight of the year”, only got a normal bonus and a pat on the back.Joe Silva called a couple days later and made sure I got the lowest pay he could give me for my next title fight 42k/42k. No PPV point/nothing. Definitely no residuals.

“Lol. People have no idea what he put fighters through.”

Mike Pierce

“There are many. One time, as I was at the curtain about to make the walk, he reminded me why he signed me and why he hadn’t cut me yet. In other words, perform how I expect or you’re gone. One hell of a pep talk when you’re already under immense pressure. *fixed for spelling* [😄]

Gerald Harris

“Joe Silva told me…Since I lost on the Ultimate Fighter that I would never be good enough for the UFC. So once I got in he hated me, then couldn’t wait for me to lose. So he gave me four badass newcomers and once I lost he cut me after 3 previous KO victories.”

Roland Delorme

“Dec 4 I had my first fight in ufc after i won i asked joe sliva if he needed me in jan cause it was my bday my daughters first bday and christmas plus new years and i just wanted to take rest of month off but if you need me ill stay in the gym. He said I dont need you i said ok then he calls me dec 28 offers me a fight im two weeks i said no i couldnt even make the weight if i wanted to and we already had this talk. So cause i said no they put me on the shelf for six months waited till I was starving and broke before offering a fight on two weeks notice against a killer. Thats how ufc does business. Your just cattle to them.”

Matt Pena

“I remember one time in Sacramento he was so pissed that Tim defended against Monson, in the morning on the way to the airport he told Tim, “your job is to entertain”. I looks at Tim and Joe, then said, “ Tim, your job is to win. You’re the champ”. He was so pissed at me.”

Not everyone agrees with these fighters assessment of Silva’s character though, with Chael Sonnen having since posted a video in which he defends the matchmakers behavior, explaining that he was under incredible pressure and time constraints that left little room for pleasantries.

Ross launched MMA Insight (previously FightOfTheNight.com) in 2009 as a way to channel his passion for the sport of mixed martial arts. He's since penned countless news stories and live fight reports along with dozens of feature articles as the lead writer for the site, reaching millions of fans in the process.