| | Anderson Sliva could be the Muhammed Ali of MMA
Charisma. Some people have it and some dont. Then theres people that have so much they can almost create electricity when they come into a room. Ali had that. Hulk Hogan had that. Jordan had that. Tyson had that. You get the picture. Well I think Anderson Silva has that. Since his first fight where he destroyed Leben and did that air guitar dance thing, you could see he was something special.
And he just kept it coming, destroying the seemingly unbeatable at 185 Rich Franklin twice, beating top contenders Nate Marquardt and Travis Lutter, unifying the titles by tapping Hendo. His run in the UFC is stuff legends are made of, despite the 2 dissapointments against Cote and Leites. But not being able to speak english is ruining his opportunity to transcend the sport of MMA. You're a champion in an english speaking country, you should take the responsibility to learn the language. Im not saying stop speaking brazilian but the language issue creates a barrier with the fans. Learning the basics of english shouldnt be hard, just enough to sell the fight and tell a few jokes to showcase some of his personality.
Guys like Ali, Frazier, Foreman, Tyson, helped bring boxing to another level not just with their talent but with their personalities. The atmosphere around their fights was electric and Anderson has the talent and the natural charisma to put himself in that class. But hes gotta stop letting a piece of trash like Ed Soares talk and make decisions for him. Did Joe Frazier beat around the bush and not give Ali a rematch? Hell no, he stepped up like a real champion and said lets do it again. There is no excuse for Anderson Silva not wanting to fight Hendo again. It would have been an awesome fight and answered alot of questions that had come up since their first fight. But no he wanted him an nate to fight an pretty much said dont have any interest in fighting Hendo again. Now Hendo/Silva II wont happen for sure an if Nate loses to Sonnen then there goes another contender that had earned and deserved a rematch with Anderson.
Fights with Hendo and Nate would have provided the kind of buildup and atmosphere that could have pushed him to that next level. Then you do a superfight with GSP and his transition to MMA Superstar is complete. Not even getting into what the possibilities of winning the 205 title from Machida would do. But If he were able to earn victories in those 3 fights then he could retire as the greatest of all time. But it would be better for MMA and even his career if he lost to any of those 3 and continued the rivalry. All the greats in sports whether its teams or people, all of them had a rivalry with someone that made them go to that place you dont wanna go and keep going when you didnt think you could. Frazier did it for Ali. The Red Sox do it for the Yankees. And I think Hendo would have done it for Anderson. Its such a damn shame that he didnt welcome that fight with open arms, try and avenge that round he lost.
But whatever Hendo is in Strikeforce now so Anderson should just put him out of his mind and focus on taking the biggest and best fights he can in the UFC. And he needs to decide whats more important to him, his friends or his legacy. Because if Machida holds on to the belt for a few more fights, then he needs to step up and challenge him. Nobody has ever held 2 belts in 2 weight classes before, should be a no-brainer. But if someone beats Machida then problem solved. Im just a huge Silva fan and I really want to see him achieve the success that he has earned and deserves. And I also want to see MMA get the respect it deserves from the general public.
For MMA to become "mainstream" they need a star and a leader to take us there, Anderson is that guy. IMO the only things stopping that are the language issues and his side stepping fights. Overcome those and I really believe he could be the Muhammed Ali of MMA.