There’s still a lot of talk about Anderson Silva and his old challenge to boxer Roy Jones Jr. Endless, silly, and unnecessary talk it may be, but it’s still droning on.
The now-former UFC middleweight champion had announced his intent to fight a boxing match against the man he called his “idol” back in 2008, but it was nixed by UFC President Dana White. White asserted that the fight wouldn’t happen while Silva is under UFC contract.
Years later, Silva described himself as more interested in fighting Jones Jr., than keeping up, or rather moving up in weight, with MMA’s Jones – Silva’s fellow pound-for-pound entrant, UFC Light Heavyweight champion Jon Jones.
Was this selfish? Not necessarily. The issue with moving up in weight certainly isn’t. In fact, maybe that’s an act of loyalty. Silva wasn’t interested in moving up to a weight where his sparring partners at Black House MMA, Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante, Antônio Rogério Nogueira and Lyoto Machida, were contesting.
But… it was goofy. Anderson Silva fighting Roy Jones Jr. in a boxing match in 2011 would proved nothing. It would have been a colossal waste of time. Jones Jr. will always be a legend, but he hasn’t been rated among the boxing world’s best since the mid 2000’s. He stayed active, but after losses to Antonio Tarver (twice) and Glen Johnson, fans moved on – enjoying his role as HBO Commentator more than his bouts. Silva is a great MMA striker, sure. Why not stay there?
Fast forward a few more years and, well, everything’s on its ear. Silva reiterates that he’d like to fight Roy Jones Jr. in a boxing match. Jones Jr. is cage side for UFC 162 as a guest of Dana White and the UFC. He watches Silva get knocked out, while mimicking Jones Jr.’s own repertoire of “hands-down and lean-away” movements one too many times. While Weidman deserves credit – he kept punching while Silva kept showboating – the consensus is that Silva’s arrogance was to blame for the loss.
So, now the fight may happen? A boxer who is ten years past his prime years, taking on an MMA fighter who seems to be struggling to stay motivated?
Now more than ever, this is all kinds of bad idea.
I’ve actually thought legends matches among the old MMA stars, in Brazilian jiu-jitsu competition or in submission wrestling, aren’t a bad idea — to bring a little glamour to those sports.
But this is a fight, where punches will fly. It’s a bad, bad idea.
Please, for the sake of your own legacy, Mr. Jones Jr. and Mr. Silva, please stop the shamming. Please stop this. Or better yet, stop calling it a fight.
Mark it off your bucket list and do a sparring exhibition at a charity event. Do a little good for the world, get this off your minds, and let’s focus on something more worthy of your talents.