Anderson Silva is not being protected, he is the juggernaut of a very deep division and he unfortunately hasn't been challenges in over a year, because of Okami's injury and a few other things.
Consider the damage he's done and the resume he's compilled and the fact that within the MW division, fighters are vying more for the shot than anything, which makes the gap between defenses a little longer.
Maia, Nate, Hendo and Okami all are top tier MWs and will challenge Anderson, but he's just too slick. Leites I think is behind all of those four above I mentioned, but shit, he's still better than Bisping....now THAT'S a FIGHTER who's being "protected"!!!!
Akiyama is finally here and he could pose an equally scary threat if he gets past Belcher.
NOPE, Anderson isn't being protected, he's just THAT DAMN GOOD.