Former Pride middleweight champion Wanderlei Silva’s illustrious career is at a crossroads. He needs a win badly at UFC 99, and he knows it.
After dispatching of Keith Jardine at UFC 84, many thought that Silva would climb back up the light heavyweight ladder. Unfortunately, Silva suffered a knockout loss to Quinton Jackson at UFC 92 that pushed him out of the 205-pound division altogether.
“I am carrying a big weight on my back. I know I have to win,” Silva said of the pressure of defeating Rich Franklin at UFC 99.
In order to get this one, Silva knows that he must search within himself to bring out the fighter who dominated Pride for five years.
“I go in hoping he hits me because the second he hits me, I will crush him,” Wanderlei continued. “This fight of mine, there are only two alternatives, either I KO him or he KO’s me because it’s going to be a bloody fight.”
There had been rumors about Silva not being 100% committed to his training for past fights, but that simply won’t be the case this time.
“I am at my maximum. I am giving my maximum because I know the importance of this fight,” Silva explained.
Silva has no ill will towards the former middleweight champion, but he knows that he must go through Franklin if he wants to remain relevant.
“I respect the guy and all, but not now. Now he is my opponent and I have to destroy him,” Silva proclaimed.