Weidman said he believes he deserves a shot at the UFC middleweight champion and that he's got just the right style to hand "The Spider" his first UFC loss. And while he wants to remain humble in his run to the top, Weidman believes Silva is essentially ducking him.
"I just feel like some way or another, Anderson Silva is not fighting me," Weidman told MMAjunkie.com (UFC blog for UFC news, UFC rumors, fighter interviews and event previews/recaps | MMAjunkie.com
). "I honestly don't feel like it's going to happen."
Weidman has done little to hide his desire to face Silva (33-4 MMA, 16-0 UFC) as quickly as possible. He thought he might get a chance after stringing together wins against top contenders Mark Munoz and Demian Maia. But Silva ultimately declined a potential matchup with Weidman and was content to stay sidelined until next year until a late offer to fight at 205 pounds against Bonnar was put on the table.
"I thought it was the perfect opportunity after the Munoz fight," Weidman said. "He said he wanted to fight three months after the Chael Sonnen fight, and it made perfect sense to do it right then. There was no reason not to. He couldn't come up with an excuse. UFC was asking him to fight me, non-stop, and he put them off and put them off and put them off and then said he doesn't want to fight until 2013."
Silva and his camp have pointed to Weidman's relative lack of experience as a primary reason for their minimal interest in the bout. After all, a 37-year-old Silva can't fight forever, and they prefer big-name fights over a bout with a less-experienced opponent like Weidman.
But the undefeated contender believes he's done enough to warrant a look.
"He can downplay me all he wants," Weidman said. "He can say whatever he wants about me, but I beat two top-5 guys in the world. Nobody has ever done that in the history of the UFC. Now I'm set to fight Dec. 29 agains Timt Boetsch, and that's going to be three top-5 guys in a row if I'm able to beat him. There's no one that's ever done that.
"I took a lot of risks to get where I am this short into my career. It's not like I just got here magically. I beat some good guys. I put myself in short-notice fights against top guys in the world. It's not easy, and I was hoping it would pay off and get my shot against Anderson, but he's ducking me."
At Saturday's post-UFC 153 event, Silva didn't entirely dismiss the potential for a Weidman bout at some point in the future, but he did essentially rule out the contest happening anytime soon. Weidman has tried to stay relatively quiet on the subject until now, but he says a recent trip to church helped him realize he doesn't have to completely silence himself in regards to his desires.
"There's a small line between cocky and confidence," Weidman said. "But I was in church and the pastor gave the definition of humility and it was 'to know yourself accurately – not more or less.' If you're going out there, and you just keep downplaying yourself and downplaying yourself, that's not being humble. That's as bad as praising yourself and talking like you're really good when you're really not. It's about knowing yourself accurately and telling the truth, and everything I'm saying, I really believe in."
Silva appears to be in line for welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre provided "Rush" can get past Carlos Condit in November. But if Weidman can beat Boetsch, he'll be on a short list of potential contenders to the 185-pound throne.
In the meantime, he's not going to focus too much on "The Spider." However, he does hope the bout comes together somehow, some way, and he promises to be ready to perform.
"I know I can beat Anderson," Weidman said. "I got into this sport, and he was the champion at 185 pounds. He looked just as impressive then as he does now. I got into this sport knowing I could beat him from day one. I think I'm a terrible, terrible matchup for him. I think everybody knows it.
"I'm not getting my hopes up. I got my hopes up when they offered him the fight and they decided he wanted to wait until 2013 and not fight me. I'm just focused on Tim Boetsch on Dec. 29, and whatever Anderson Silva is going to do, he's going to do. I just hope the stars align and he accepts the fight when the time comes."