Current middleweight champion out to shock the world again.
It was arguably the most shocking moment of the past year, and perhaps of all time in the UFC.
The instant when highly-touted, but still massive underdog, Chris Weidman knocked out champion and pound-for-pound king Anderson Silva at UFC 162 will go down in mixed martial arts folklore.
However, in the lead-up to their rematch at UFC 168, Weidman said he is ready to shock the world again and show he earned the first victory and was not handed it by a cocky opponent.
“I feel like to solidify my championship, I need to defend my belt, especially going in against the same guy and everybody saying it was a fluke,” Weidman said.
Critics of Weidman’s victory earlier this year pointed to Silva’s tactics of ‘clowning’ inside the Octagon and feigning injury as being the reason why the challenger won the fight.
However, Weidman says he has had a sensational camp for the upcoming fight in Las Vegas, saying injuries and outside concerns have not been there as they were before UFC 162.
The now champion was so confident in his preparation he invited Silva, and others, too watch a live stream of his camp, although Weidman is unsure if his opponent or others tuned in.
Weidman said despite holding the gold around his waist, he feels like his is again the underdog and while it could be another case of playing mind games with Silva, the 29-year-old beleives he has the least to gain out of the rematch.
“I still feel like I have everything to lose in this fight,” Weidman said.
“I want to go on and achieve a lot of other long-term goals I have in this sport, and do to that, I need to win this fight.
“So I put a lot of pressure on myself, and it’s pressure that I had when I decided to get into this sport. It’s the same going into this fight as the last one. It’s just a better situation this time.
“I’m going to go out there and try to finish him, whether it’s on the feet or the ground.
I’ll take either one. It’s not like if I can knock him out, I’m not going to submit him because I knocked him out last time. It’s whatever I can get at the time.”