So what is it that fans want to see
Anderson Silva is training very hard and is focused for his fight this weekend with Chael Sonnen. According to his manager Ed Soares, Anderson is walking around at a lean 194 pounds.
There is no doubt in my mind that Anderson is ready for this fight. He is undoubtedly one of the greatest, if not the greatest fighter in the world. For the last several years, he has destroyed every fighter put in his path including James Irvin, Dan Henderson, and Rich Franklin. His win over veteran fighter Forrest Griffin appeared to be effortless and left Forrest embarrassed, dazed, and bewildered to the point that he just ran out of the ring.
My questions concerning Anderson Silva have nothing to do with his skill level or his ability to beat opponents. My concern is will he give fight fans the type of performance we expect.
Anderson Silva's latest win over Demian Maia was nothing short of an embarrassment for the UFC. He spent a full 5 rounds acting like a fool. It was obvious he could have finished Demian anytime he wanted to. Instead, he walked around with his hands at his side, laid down in front of Demian, and acted more like a clown than a fighter. Instead of finishing the fight, he took it a full five rounds to win by decision. It was so unbelievable it was the first time UFC President Dana White ever walked out in the middle of a main event and didn't present a Champion with his belt.
Anderson's performance left Dana White apologizing at the post press conference. Dana even speculated at the press conference that Anderson could be the first UFC Champion to fight in the untelevised preliminary bouts. Dana said he had never been more disappointed in a fighter and his performance.
So what is it that fans want to see?
When you have the skill of Anderson Silva fans expect you to finish fights. When Mike Tyson was in his prime, it was business as usual to spend $40 - $50 to watch one of his fights and watch him destroy his opponent in less than a minute. This is exactly what the fans expect from Anderson. Sure, it is disappointing to spend $50 for a PPV fight that lasts less than a minute, but it is less disappointing than watching a guy act a fool for a full 5 rounds.
What do the fans expect from the UFC?
Anderson needs some real competition at 185 pounds. The Demian Maia match was a terrible fight. No one expected Demian to have a chance at winning that fight and Anderson proved with his antics just how bad a match up it was. The UFC has to find someone at 185 pounds that can present a real challenge.