Israel Adesanya defeated his idol Anderson Silva February 9th. But Silva won the crowd. Silva had a very respectable performance against one of the best up and comers in the fight game, Adesanya. Silva was a huge underdog going into this fight and most thought would get TKO’d by Adesanya. But Silva won the people over by standing his ground and showing everyone why you don’t ever count out one of, if not the greatest, fighter of all time. Adesanya seems to resemble Silva more than any other fighter we have seen with his unique fighting style blended with elite striking ability and showmanship. Adesanya leading up to the fight showed Silva much respect and rightly so. During the fight you could see in Adesanya’s approach that Silva even at 43 years of age, is still a huge threat at any given moment.
In what was an extremely entertaining fight, it was even more so symbolic. This fight was the passing of the torch from Silva to Adesanya. President of the UFC, Dana White, stated that whoever wins gets the next title shot. With Whittaker pulling out of the day of the fight with a hernia, it left more questions than answers. Does Kelvin Gastelum wait for Whittaker or does he fight Adesanya next? And does Silva retire or does he fight one more fight like he talked about after in the post fight interview?
For Silva, fighting is what he knows best and it’s his pride and joy. Very few have achieved as much as he did in this sport. But this fight seemed to be the perfect time to walk away. Silva showed he is still an elite fighter even at 43 years of age. With the torch now passed to Adesanya, let’s see Adesanya write his own legacy and have Silva ride out into the sunset. Silva has nothing left to prove and his impact on this sport is unmatched. All in all, this was a win for the fans, Adesanya, Silva, and the UFC.