Dana White unsure how to usher former champ Anderson Silva into retirement
Anderson Silva wants to complete the final two fights on his UFC contract but Dana White doesn’t know how to matchmake the 45-year-old.
Anderson Silva’s historic MMA career is winding down. The former longtime UFC middleweight champion has two fights remaining on his contract, and he’s made it clear he intends on honoring them before hanging up his gloves.
Silva (34-10 MMA, 17-6 UFC) is currently the oldest fighter on the UFC roster at 45, and despite once going on the longest winning streak in company history at 16 fights, is currently in a stretch of just one victory in his past eight contests.
“The Spider” hasn’t seen action since UFC 237 in May 2019, where he suffered a first-round TKO loss to Jared Cannonier courtesy of a leg kick. He’s begun to express interest in various fights on social media, meaning his penultimate bout could soon be on the horizon. The problem, though? UFC president Dana White doesn’t know how to match him up.
“I don’t know,” White told ESPN in a recent interview. “I honestly don’t know what to do with his last two fights. When Anderson’s really ready to fight, we’ll sit down and look at it, and we’ll figure out what we thinks makes sense for him next. There’s a lot of things that goes into the decision-making process with an Anderson Silva. His age, what he gets paid – all that stuff’s important.”
White’s problem is further compounded by the fact the fights Silva has expressed interest in of late do not do much for him. First, it was Silva once again calling for a showdown with Conor McGregor. More recently, a potential clash with Anthony Pettis has been taking headlines after “Showtime” offered to jump to middleweight to make it happen.
The pairing with McGregor has already been dismissed by White, and his tone isn’t much more enthusiastic when it comes to Pettis, leaving him in something of a conundrum.
“I’m not crazy about it,” White said. “You’ve got a guy that fought at 145 pounds and a guy that’s in the conversation for the GOAT at 185 pounds and walks around at 210, 215. It’s not a big fight that really means something. I like making fights that mean something, so I’m not crazy about that fight.”