Will Silva vs. Sonnen II Rival UFC 100’s Lesnar and GSP One-Two Punch?

June 25, 2012
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“This isn’t one of the biggest sporting events of the summer; it’s one of the biggest sporting events of the year.”

That’s a fairly lofty claim by UFC president Dana White, considering it encompasses the Super Bowl, the NBA Finals, the World Series, and, this year, the Summer Olympics; but it is a claim he made.

The UFC is pulling out all the stops for the UFC 148 rematch between middleweight champion Anderson Silva and challenger Chael Sonnen, who square off July 7 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

Not only is the UFC promoting it as its top event of the year, they’re also promoting a UFC Fan Expo around it and partnered with the city of Las Vegas for International Fight Week with a plethora of fan events all week long leading up the fight.

The biggest event ever in the promotion’s history to date was UFC 100, where Brock Lesnar defeated Frank Mir and Georges St-Pierre beat Thiago Alves.

UFC 100 reportedly pulled in 1.6 million pay-per-view buys, a live gate over $5 million, and drew just under 11,000 fans to the Mandalay Bay Events Center.

White expects UFC 148 to rival that event.

“There’s no doubt that we plan on doing over a million (PPV) buys here. We expect UFC 100 numbers,” he boldly predicted on Monday.

Those are going to be difficult numbers to replicate, but the rivalry surrounding Anderson Silva and Chael Sonnen has reached epic proportions.

Everyone is used to Sonnen spouting his diatribe at his Brazilian foe, but this is really the first time in Silva’s career that he has shucked his humble, nice guy image.

“Chael Sonnen is going to get his ass kicked like he’s never gotten his ass kicked before,” Silva declared on Monday. “I’m going to beat his ass like he’s never been beaten before. He’s going to not be able to walk out of the Octagon by himself; I can guarantee that.”

Silva added that the time for trash talk was over, but in this day and age when many fans seem to latch onto controversy, sometimes even more so than achievement, the trash talk will likely continue right up until fight time, propelling it to huge numbers, if not UFC 100-like results.

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  • BlackWolf_8

    not even close, silva is not a draw and sonnen is not a draw, no matter how much trash talking they do.

    • adam1848


    • itll prob. do half the buys, 800k range if not a little more…maybe 1 million but thats about it…def. not 1.6 million…however, silva v. sonnen is a draw, its actually the biggest MW fight possible in all of MMA and its not even close or debatable…

  • maddawgmar

    I think it could have been, but there is no lead up fights, who else is on there? If they could have had another big bout, contendership. But a washed up bout and mid tier fighters before that. No. If it was put in a stadium like Dallas and had another big fight or title fight, then maybe.

  • p3ezy

    Ortiz and Griffin still have the names to be decent enough draws. And I think that Silva and Sonnen are huge draws. You also have Cung Le’s Vietnamese audience. Add to all this, MMA is alot more popular and vocal in the media now compared to UFC 100. I think that it might not be as big as 100, but if it isn’t it will be close.

  • RubeKegal

    Don’t think theyll match 100 as 100 was the most ridiculously stacked card Ive ever seen, but I think it will be a top 5 seller

  • Jay32

    I was at UFC 100 and I hate to break it to you and this lame article. The Dan Henderson vs Michael Bisping fight was so much more of a fan favorite and draw, than watching GSP win a decision.

    • fightfankevin

      A lttle harsh considering bisping/hendo had the ultimate fighter to draw it and GSP fought 3 rounds with a pulled groin.

    • MrAdidas

      I was aslo at UFC 100, 32 rows from the Octagon. Sorry to disappoint you, but the GSP vs Alves fight was “bigger” than Brock Vs. Mir 2. People chanting GSP GSP GSP, b4 he was even fighting. GSP also received the loudest ovation/cheering compared to any fighter there Brock & Mir included. BTW the GSP vs. Alves fight was sick, considering Alves was KOing everyone at the time & looked almost unstopable until he fought GSP & was brought back to reality. Alves must have weighed 20+lbs more than GSP, yet GSP was all over him & taking him down at will & almost KO’d Alves … with a torn groin. Yeah GSP is “shit” … wink wink!

  • MikeMc1983

    Umm, a fights being a “draw” has nothing to do with the actual right.
    UFC had people tune in to see Brock and Gsp. I have no idea why Gsp has a following other than Canadians don’t have anything else to hold on to. Brock was a crossover guy.
    You can probably count on one hand how many people were buying UFC 100 because they just wanted to see hendo. I like hendo a lot. But tv’s were not shutting off when his fight was over.
    There’s also the group of people that just buy all of the ppv’s reguardless of card. I fall into that class.

    • MrAdidas

      WTF are you talking about?!? WOW stop commenting!

  • johnnylopes

    umm you guys do know that Thiago Alves was the only Brazilian on that main card right? this will easily past UFC 100 simply because all of Brasil will buy this card to see Anderson try to shut Chael up… lets add Tito Ortiz has the biggest fan base, so all his fans and Forrest fans will buy, and Patrick Cote whos a huge star in Canada will get all them canadians to buy it since hes facin an actor in Cung Le… this card easily does 1.7 – 2 million

    • are you delusional? 1.7-2 million? this card is lucky to break 1 million and its not because the card isnt good or that AS v. Sonnen isnt a huge fight because it is…cards just dont sell as well as they used to for multiple reaons…this card will sell no where close to what you predict…brazilians dont buy PPVs simply for the fact its not even an option…they get it for free…

      • erwin

        Let me tell you. In Brazil, if you are a really mma fan, you should sign a private channel that broadcast all the events, you pay about 20 dollars per month. So does not worth buying a single event if you live in Brazil. For that reason, i really dont believe there will be many ppv buys in brazil.

    • ryno

      Brazil doesn’t pay for PPV, so I don’t know how they can help PPV numbers.

    • MrAdidas

      WHAT?!? They might be lucky to get 1 million PPV buys. If I’m not mistaken, they/UFC only consider the PPV buys from the USA, they do not add the PPV buys from Canada or any other country. I believe that goes for all the major sports in the US, when you see the “total number of viewers” who were watching the SuperBowl or World Series, it’s the viewers all across the US, the same goes for PPV buys … I think. (is that a correct ASSumption?)