Pound-for-pound king believes his experience will trump Chris Weidman.
His next opponent has been likened to a younger, more explosive version of Chael Sonnen – the man that pushed Anderson Silva to the brink of of losing his UFC middleweight title.
However, Silva believes his experience will trump anything Chris Weidman will bring to the table when the pair meet in the main event at UFC 162 next month.
‘The Spider’ has been practicing martial arts for 30 years and had defended his UFC strap four times before Weidman had even fought in his first professional mixed martial arts bout.
Despite having gone through countless scenarios in his pro career, Silva says he cannot discount anything the challenger will throw at him.
“We have to respect Weidman,” Silva said.
“He’s won some fights, and he’s proven himself to be where he is. He’s 10 years younger, and he’s going to come in with a lot of cardio – a lot of power – and try to grapple, I’m sure. We’ve got to respect him. He’s won some fights.”
Wediman is undefeated in his nine pro fights to date and has impressed in the UFC, having already picked up a fight of the night bonus against Mark Munoz and submission of the night award Jesse Bongfeldt from a standing guillotine choke.
Possessing excellent grappling skills and a purple belt in jiu-jitsu with former UFC champ Matt Serra in his training camp, Weidman has the youth and energy to test Silva for 25 minutes if needed.
However, the reigning champ says he does not feel all of his 38 years and said he has tailored his camp in a bid to prepare for the explosiveness that is set to come at him from ‘The All-American’.
“Saying that he’s a younger guy doesn’t make much sense,” Silva said.
“I’m always training with younger guys. I train with a jiu-jitsu world champion who’s 20 years old. I train with a kickboxing champion whose a much younger guy. I’m always training with much younger and very athletic guys, so that doesn’t really make a difference.
“You really can’t argue with talent, and each person has their own talents.
“But I’ve been doing this since I was 8 years old, and the new generation has to see what I’ve done and see where I’ve been. I’m not somebody that started training in my teens or my 20s.
“I’ve been doing this a long time, so being in there is something natural, and it’s something I feel comfortable doing. It’s what I’ve always done.”