Rashad Evans: “I Believe I Can Beat Anderson Silva,” but Still Undecided on Move to 185 Pounds

January 21, 2013
41 Comments

Following Michael Bisping’s loss at UFC on FX 7 over the weekend, no one seems to know what comes next for UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva.

The plan was to pit Bisping against Silva later this year if he could get past Vitor Belfort in Brazil, but he instead suffered a TKO loss after a nasty head kick landed in the second round.

So with the UFC’s longest reigning champion sitting on the sidelines with no fight on his radar, everyone is wondering what comes next for him?

One possibility comes from former UFC light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans, who has previously teased a move down to 185 pounds if the right fight came along. Currently Evans is preparing for his fight against Antonio Rogerio Nogueira at UFC 156, but it’s hard to ignore a potential match-up against Anderson Silva in the future.

“Anything’s a possibility, but first things first, the only thing that’s on my mind is getting past Nogueira. He’s a tough competitor and I’m excited to compete against him, so that right there has been taking my focus more than anything,” Evans told MMAWeekly.com on a media conference call on Monday.

A fight against Anderson Silva isn’t really the question for Evans. He would gladly accept that tomorrow, but the problem is he’s not confident just yet that he’d make 185 pounds comfortably right now. Evans has fought at heavyweight and light heavyweight, and while he does have a smaller frame walking around at five-feet-11-inches tall, he knows a move to middleweight would be a major endeavor on his body.

“It would be a lifestyle change. I’m talking about not just pre-fight stuff, my whole diet year round would have to change. Cause naturally I don’t look it, I’m really short and everything else, but naturally my body it goes to 235 (pounds) when I’m consistently not training. So everything I’d have to change about my diet on a daily basis,” said Evans.

“But if an opportunity was there and I felt good to do it, I’d do so. But one reason I decided not to do it was because I was like why would I drop to 185 just to be in the same spot I’m in at 205? It didn’t make any sense to me. If an opportunity came along that made more sense then it would be worth the sacrifice. If it was a title shot or against a really good, top contender, something like that, it would be something that people wanted to see, it would be something I would think about.”

The sacrifice would include a huge shift in Evans’ daily eating habits, and at 33 years of age, he knows it would be a tough road to travel to make the move to middleweight at this stage of his career.

“It’s a big question mark for me,” Evans stated about the move to 185 pounds. “Once I moved past 30, my body started changing a bit. Before it used to seem so easy to make 205, but now I’ve really got to focus and pay attention to food I put in my body, as well as any nutritional supplements because it (expletive) with my weight. Eating normally now like having a day or two off, I can be like 227 (pounds) without even trying, so I would really have to get a dietician or something, get on the Dolce Diet or something.

“I’m already at the top of my division and for me to go down to 185 is kind of like now I’ve got to start over and prove myself at 185. Because I am good at 205, but who is to say I’d be the same fighter at 185 when I cut that weight? There’s a lot of variables that can come into play.”

When it comes down to the match-up itself, Evans is happy to face a fighter the caliber of Anderson Silva, and as a matter of fact he welcomes it. Evans believes he has the skill set necessary to not only give Silva a run for his money, but he thinks he could be the first fighter to hand him a defeat in the UFC.

“When my career’s all said and done, I want to be able to look back and say I competed against some of the best guys ever in history. To me to be able to get a chance to compete against Anderson Silva would just be an amazing experience, and something I’d be able to take with me forever, to be able to say I went against the best guy and beat the best guy,” Evans said.

“I believe I can beat Anderson Silva, and I believe that the skills that I have is something he’d have hard time dealing with, but to compete against the guy, first and foremost, would be an honor in and of itself.”

Now the question remains will Evans actually try to make the move to 185 pounds and challenge Anderson Silva?

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  • bajafox

    Not a big fan of Rashad but I would fully support his move down to 185. The fact is as long as Jones holds the belt he has no chance to ever regain the title and a match up with Anderson, IMO, is very intriguing and would make for a great fight.

  • http://www.facebook.com/tony.le.547389 Tony Le

    uhh he doesn’t sound too confident that he can make the weight and beat anderson…i didn’t realize weight was that big of an issue for rashad

  • Advance*

    I think it’s kinda lame to say you think you can beat Anderson Silva then give all these excuses about the weight cut. He’s relatively short for light heavyweight and he’s not the most ripped fighter in the division. It might require a lifestyle/diet change but if you honestly think you can beat the best fighter in the world, you’re not gonna take that opportunity?

    • Derek Lemaster

      Yes! Saved me from having to write it!

    • Kris-tyahn

      I’m sure if they asked Evans to fight Silva @ LHW, he’d take that fight in an instant, while Silva on the other hand, probably would not take it. Silva had 3 chances minimum to fight a decent LHW & all three times he took an easy fight, a 1 dimensional bum, who had NO wrestling. As for Evans saying he can beat Silva, I think he has the skills to do it, this guy fought @ HW, he’s the opposite of Anderson, Rashad doesnt mind fighting bigger opponents. Evans might be drained & wilted by the time he makes 185lbs, so why would he even bother to attempt that, if that’s a possibility?!? Time for silva to stop fighting in the WORST division in all of MMA/UFC.

  • hairypudding

    Theres no way silva can beat rashad. Rashad is quicker and a great wrestler which is silvas weakness

    • http://www.CombatScienceMMA.com/ CombatScienceMMA

      How is that Silva’s weakness? B/C he got taken down by Chael Sonnen who is a world class olympic caliber greco roman wrestler? High level jiujitsu guys have had trouble taking Silva down. I’m pretty sure Andersons wrestling coach is no slouch. You may want to look him up.

    • Mark McDowall

      Rashad is a college level wrestler. He doesn’t have the caliber of wrestling that Sonnen or Hendo have. And yes if you were to say Silva had a weakness, it could be in his take down defense, but he’s so strong everywhere else that it hardly matters.

      Rashad would have a punchers chance against Silva, I really wouldn’t give him much more than that. I think it could be an entertaining fight though. Judging by Rashad’s comments though, sounds like he is making excuses to keep him out of the fight.

      • Kris-tyahn

        Rashad would definitely take Silva down, very fast & explosive. If he could take Phil Davis down, Silva is getting taken down. Making excuses?!? Really? How so? Why don’t Silva move up to LHW & actually fight a actual top 10 opponent & NOT a 1 dimensional NON wrestler?!? B/C Silva doesn’t want to take any risk of losing, so he’ll keep fighting BUMS @ MW & 1 dimensional BUMS @ LHW. The GOAT fights Irvin, Forrest & Bonnar, wow talk about skill. Can you imagine Pacquiao or Mayweather fighting guys who were semi retired, or call out much smaller oppoennts & then want them to move up & fight them. BAHAHAHA how pathetic is that? I guess if GSP called out Ben Henderson people wouldn’t talk siht about GSP right?!? wink wink!

        • http://www.facebook.com/swift.hammer.9 Patrick Hammer

          Sounds like this kris kid is really not liking the fact that Anderson Silva is still the middleweight champion.Sorry angry little fella but Anderson will probably retire as the middleweight champion in the UFC.

          • Icepick

            Only if he can dodge the best guys until the end….which Dana will probably allow!

        • Mark McDowall

          I think GSP vs Ben Henderson would be an amazing fight. Henderson could easily make 170 and he has a very similar style to GSP…that would be a super fight I would pay anything to see!

    • Lawdog1521

      Blah, blah, blah, Anderson’s weakness, blah, blah, blah. I think after six years and fifteen opponents people would realize nobody has a damn clue what Anderson’s “weakness” is. Short of a handgun, at this point I certainly don’t know.

      • Kris-tyahn

        Dude Silva has fought 2 legit wrestlers & Henderson beat him the 1st rond & made the mistake/cocky to stand with him in the 2nd, which came back to bite him in the ass. Sonnen proved wrestling is Silva’s weakness, in the 2nd fight Sonnen took Silva down & mounted him, but I guess Silva let him do that right? In the 2nd round, Silva held on to Sonnens shorts for 10+ secs, which prevented Sonnen from taking down & keeping him there for another round & being up 2-0. Just b/c Silva is 16-0, doesnt mean **** all about his weakness. Leben, Lutter, Okami, Maia, Cote, Leites, Marquardt, Irvin, Bonnar, Griffin, Belfort & Franklin ARE NOT WRESTLERS! So whats your poiint about Silva being 16-0?!? Fought 2 guys with wrestling & every fight he lost a round, actually he lost 7 of 9 rounds to wrestlers, now what?!? Pretty easy to do well when you dont fight anyone who’s great at your weakness.

        • Alan

          “he lost 7 of 9 rounds to wrestlers” – since he didn’t lose those fights, that’s a pretty weak argument. All you’re proving is that wrestlers can win rounds but not fights.

        • El Gvapo

          Sounds like someone gets pretty hard for wrestlers. WRESTLERS!!

        • http://www.facebook.com/karen.h.meade.3 Karen Meade

          Silva is great, but Kris is correct in pointing out that wrestling is the best way to challenge him. I don’t see Silva losing to anybody in stand-up.

          Problem with Sonnen is he hits like a girl, so even in a mount he can’t hurt anyone. *If* Rashad mounts Silva. He will do more damage than Sonnen. Anyone would.

          Sonnen also gassed horribly, despite Mike Dolce’s claim he would be in “great shape”, Chael (by his own admission) had to cut much more weight than usual. Chael’s legs were RUBBERY even BEFORE Silva laid him out. He was done without taking a hit, and Silva was in no danger after the first round.

          If Rashad can be as single-minded as Sonnen and doesn’t try standing with Anderson, he has a good chance. I don’t see Rashad gassing. Other than Weidman, Rashad is the only realistic option as an opponent for the Spider at 185.

    • Oswald Cobblepott

      Machida isn’t half the striker Silva is…and he put Evans to sleep!

  • pappy

    Silva beat an old vigor whom courier destroyed and vigor never was the same.then silva beats a school teacher rich franklin whom cung le ko’d with one punch, an old cung le at that. My question is whom has silva fought that’s elite? I believe dana protects him for financial reasons (endorsements)

    • El Gvapo

      Well that school teacher also beat Chuck, who beat Randy, who beat a hell of a lot of great fighters. I’m afraid that logic doesn’t work in mma.

    • http://www.facebook.com/karen.h.meade.3 Karen Meade

      I thought Courier played tennis:)

  • Darin

    Have Silva fight him at 205. I’d rather see that than watch GSP get molested by Silva.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Charlie-Phillips/1234886916 Charlie Phillips

    rashad needs to worry about lil nog before he starts talking about dropping down to 185 and on top of that he couldnt beat machida

  • Timothy Malone

    Evans is right, he might as well face Jones again. Then if he loses that fight he can move to middleweight because he has no future at light heavyweight anymore.

    • pappy

      Are you a man or a middle aged female librarian? Surprised someone like you are interested in fighting beings you look like a crier

      • Jonathan

        I agree with this statement

      • Timothy Malone

        I called you a troll earlier which is why you are saying this I’m guessing. Way to prove me wrong. I won’t be feeding you anymore so go ahead and tire yourself out.

      • John Bunch

        Are you hoping he’s actually a middle-aged female librarian? You looking for some companionship for the fight Saturday night? At least he has the balls to use his real identity.

    • Kris-tyahn

      Tim ughhhh really?!? Evans has lost twice @ LHW – to Former Champ & the current Champ, yeah his future @ LHW is OVER!!! Okay NOOB, let the adults talk.

      • Timothy Malone

        I clearly said if he loses to Jones again his future at the weight class is over. What is he going to do then? They won’t let him fight Jones a third time.

        And only kids call people NOOB.

        • El Gvapo

          You’re right. I’d say the only way he’d have a future at LHW is if Jones moves up a class. You don’t get a third crack at the champ, Koscheck is in that position in the WW division.

        • John Bunch

          What the hell is up with the influx of intellectually challenged trolls? Wonder if it’s one dude with numerous accounts.

  • Maddawgmar

    Rashad will beat Silva, like Obama will save the USA. It may happen on a fluke, but not very likely.

    • Oswald Cobblepott

      Saved from what? We are better than ever! The news paints a picture of trouble but that’s as far as it goes. If you were to come here you’d never leave just like everyone else. Not only do we cultivate the best but we attract the best from around the globe.

      Which is why we have the UFC and this website…we need saving? I was at the last UFC card in Vegas and believe me our country is doing very well!

      • Maddawgmar

        First off it was a joke. Second I’m a US citizen. I was born and raised in Las Vegas. You see my screen name, and the mar at the end. That means Marine. I know the state of America right now, and if you think that 17 trillion in debt is better than ever, I’d hate to see what bad looks like.

        • kingkongbundy

          Oh man…you need to go take a macro econ class or two with your GI bill.

          The federal fiscal policy is must more complicated that you could understand.

          • Maddawgmar

            I’m not gonna get in a political debate on an mma forum over a joke. Bottom line Silva would destroy Evans. FYI, I graduated with a masters in Poli Sci. I understand plenty. Damn liberals are so sensitive.

  • http://www.facebook.com/swift.hammer.9 Patrick Hammer

    So Rashad has convinced himself that he can beat Silva, great for him. He needs to convince himself that he can beat someone like Machida first and then maybe he can earn a rematch and hopefully stall for three rounds and avoid becoming another highlight for Machida while possibly pulling out a decision.I just don’t see Rashad beating Silva, but I guess his fans aren’t so easily convinced until he is lying unconscious in a pool of his own blood. That said, WAR Rashad! Hahahaha, what a joke.

  • El Gvapo

    I can’t believe there are so many people on here doubting Anderson on here, I’m pretty convinced someone’s using multiple accounts, probably that dude who’s fallen head over heels for Weidman. Personally, I can’t understand why everyone gets so upset about Silva “not fighting top fighters” as they put it. It’s up to the challengers to beat the champ, not the other way round. There are plenty of challenges still for Silva with Weidman, Vitor etc. I accept the MW division is probably the thinnest but its up to the challengers to get better. And why is there not the same clamour for Jones to move up in weight? And GSP?

  • drkdisciple

    Rashad is as likely to beat Anderson as he was to beat Jones!

  • adski

    Ring rust can cause lot of problems to fighters. Never thought hallucinations as one of them. Poor Rashad