by Damon Martin – MMAWeekly.com
Chael Sonnen has not been short on words for UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva.
The brash fighter from Team Quest has been on a mission to take the 185-pound title from Silva for a long time. When he beat Nate Marquardt at UFC 109, he earned that opportunity, but his disdain for the Brazilian goes much further back than just when he got his title shot.
Speaking with MMAWeekly Radio prior to ever knowing for sure if he would even earn a title shot with a win over Marquardt, it was Sonnen who opened up a verbal barrage aimed square at Silva.
“That guy’s no more the top fighter out there than Bigfoot is roaming the woods,” said Sonnen. “That is an absolute myth, and all these guys can buy into it, but there’s a young man out in Portland, Ore., that is not signing up on that bandwagon.”
Sonnen went on to blast Silva for his dislike of the media and saying that the Brazilian spoke perfect English, but just didn’t enjoy talking to the press, so he chose to have his manager Ed Soares translate his Portuguese answers instead.
Regardless of how Sonnen felt about Silva’s pound-for-pound standing, he does admit that the Brazilian is a dangerous opponent, and possesses weapons that can hurt him in the fight if he allows it to go that way.
“He’s a scary fighter. There’s not a lot of guys you can say that about that are just flat out scary. He’s very (mean). He’s vicious,” Sonnen said about Silva. “He’s very sharp in that he’s so skinny and long. His elbows are sharp. His knees are sharp. His fists are sharp. And he’s going to hurt me really bad on Aug. 7.
“I’m confident that I can deal with the pain, walk through it, go to the hospital that night, and leave with the championship belt anyway.”
Most fighters are careful not to show their hand before a fight, but Sonnen has made no secret about his wrestling credentials and employing them to keep Silva planted firmly on the mat for their upcoming fight.
He also makes sure to serve notice that he’s not a fighter that’s going to predict a war. He’s not going to predict a “Fight of the Night.”
“I’m not of the camp that goes out and says ridiculous things like, ‘I’m going to go out and bang,’ and, ‘One of us is going to fall down.’ I’m not taking any way out here. I’m not saying, ‘We’re going to go out and beat each other up until one guy’s not standing.’ I’m going to be standing. He’s going to be flat on his back,” Sonnen stated.
“And if I got to stay out there and pound on him for 25 minutes and go home and watch myself on the DVR, that’s fine with me.”
Sonnen took it a step further during his Q&A session with fans a few months back, “this is going to be a one-sided pounding, and I’m swinging the hammer.”
The former NCAA All-American will get the chance to prove he can swing that hammer this weekend at UFC 117 in Oakland, Calif., when he meets Anderson Silva for the UFC middleweight championship.