Former UFC champion opens up about his change of heart.
Anderson Silva said taking erasing the regrets he harbors in the wake of his loss to Chris Weidman was the main reason he agreed to a rematch later this year.
Silva lost his UFC middleweight belt for the first time after a nearly seven year reign at the top of the division, after Weidman caught the champ in a stunning second round knock out at UFC 162.
After the bout Silva was disinterested in facing Weidman again, saying he was done with title shots and he was ready for a new challenge.
But after the fog of his first loss in the UFC lifted, he revealed he was not happy to walk away, and in less than a week after the fight, the 38-year-old agreed to the rematch given to him by UFC president Dana White.
“I was so sad with myself, with my lack of control on the moment, that I said some words that weren’t nice,” Silva said.
“I said that I wouldn’t fight for the title. But after I signed the contract (earlier in the year), Dana told me that he would give (me a rematch if I had lost the belt).
“I was so out of myself that I didn’t think about it.”
The bout, which saw Silva goading his American challenger into hitting him, was one of the more shocking in recent history.
However, it was Silva’s theatrics which dominated conversation after the bout as much as having a new champions in the 185lb division.
The Brazilian’s tactics looked to be getting inside the head of Weidman at the end of the first round, but after he dropped him with a left hook, the new champion could be seen on camera calling Silva a “disrespectful piece of s—” after the stoppage.
Silva himself said his gameplan was off and that the loss did not start to sink in until Weidman’s name was read out as the champion – not his.
“I lost my focus and made a technical mistake,” Silva said.
“It was one of the things that I left – the philosophy of the martial art – and it cost me the belt.
“I always fought with this felling of keeping the martial art philosophy and keeping the control of the situation – trying to be as calm as possible for me to keep the balance of the octagon, which is very hard to do.”
Weidman will defend his UFC middleweight title for the first time in the rematch against Silva in the main event of UFC 168 on December 28 in Las Vegas.