Opinion: ‘The Axe Murderer’ in Perspective

By Jason Probst Jul 6, 2011
Has time has caught up with Wanderlei Silva’s chin? | Photo: Daniel Herbertson /Sherdog.com

When it comes to chins and how they suddenly go south, former lightweight boxing champion Sean O’Grady summed it up best: “It’s like a cash register. You can stuff a lot of bills into it, but once it’s full, it just doesn’t close anymore.”

In Wanderlei Silva’s Pride Fighting Championships career, he did more to inflict damage and frightful highlight-reel violence than any fighter in the history of the game. Since being re-signed by the UFC in 2007, he has gone 2-4. His loss to Chris Leben at UFC 132 on Saturday in Las Vegas was a grim reminder of the O’Grady observation.

Silva was a great promotional acquisition for the UFC after a seven-year absence, during which time he terrorized the light heavyweight division and single-handedly built a template which virtually every striking-based fighter in the game could not help but admire and aspire to.

Silva is also one of the most likeable guys in the game; there’s no pleasure in seeing him continue to risk himself, especially given his hard-charging style, in future fights.

Jason Probst can be reached at [email protected] or twitter.com/jasonprobst.

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