Anderson Silva didn’t hold back during a recent interview with Brazilian newspaper reporter, Gazeta de Povo. During the interview, the UFC middleweight champion spoke candidly about his former teammates Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, Vitor Belfort and Wanderlei Silva, as well as his upcoming fight with Forrest Griffin.
Anderson talked about his current training partner, UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida, saying that he hopes that Machida beats Shogun at UFC 104.
“I’m not saying Shogun is not prepared, but how long did Lyoto have to wait to get a title shot?” Silva asked. “The truth is, Shogun fought twice and how many fights Machida had to do? Its obvious something is up.”
He also stated that “Shogun didn’t fight enough to deserve the belt,” and that he got the title shot “only because Rampage and Rashad were declared to be coaches on TUF 10.”
One person who may be after Anderson’s belt is Vitor Belfort, a former teammate of Silva’s. UFC officials say Belfort may be a possible contender if they are able to sign the former UFC light heavyweight champion. Belfort has said that he’s ready for the challenge.
“Vitor Belfort is not a friend of mine,” Silva explained. “If this fight gets real, I will be training for that. I respect him and we even trained together but now it’s easy, everybody wants to face me.”
“I’m always asked about who I want to face next and the answer is, I still have too much to go through and have many things to live. I want to fight the best.”
One fighter that he probably will not be facing anytime soon is Wanderlei Silva, with whom he has been sparring with verbally outside of the octagon. While Wanderlei had been threatening to take Anderson’s belt, Wanderlei’s loss to Rich Franklin at UFC 99 stalled a potential bout between the Silvas’.
“There are people better than me who could defeat me – but we don’t know them,” Anderson noted of his former training partner.
That sense of confidence is carrying over towards his fight with former UFC Heavyweight champ Forrest Griffin, whom he will meet at UFC 101.
“I’m training for this challenge,” he stated. “We’re putting in check our job one more time. Griffin is tough, a former UFC champion. I’m focused on this fight and let’s see what happens.”
UFC 101: Declaration takes place on August 8, 2009 from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It is headlined by UFC lightweight champion BJ Penn defending his title against top contender, Kenny Florian.