Anderson Silva thinks Chael Sonnen’s opportunity passed with their first bout. | Photo: Sherdog.com
Anderson Silva’s manager, Ed Soares, expects the UFC middleweight champion to fight next in the first quarter of 2012.
Whether Chael Sonnen will be the opponent standing across from him has not yet been determined. At this point, the Silva camp doesn’t think he should be.
In an interview with the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Rewind” show, Soares explained Silva’s feelings on the matter and much more:
Soares on whether Chael Sonnen should get the next title shot against Anderson Silva: “Anderson just feels that he doesn’t deserve it yet. He doesn’t deserve it yet. … A lot of people are interested in the fight. It’s a big fight. Anderson’s not ducking him. Anderson, right now, is focused on recouping his shoulder, and basically he’s going through physical therapy on that just to get that back 100 percent.
But you know what? Whoever Dana [White] puts in front of us, for the most part, we’re always going to take the fight. [Anderson has] never dodged any fights. It’s really not up to us to determine. … I’m not saying that’s who we want or who we don’t want. People ask my opinion, and I see what Anderson’s saying. He’s fought him once. He had his opportunity, but hey, if Dana wants to put the fight on again, we’ll cross that bridge when it comes.”
On whether Michael Bisping would be a suitable challenger if he beats Jason Miller: “I’ll be honest with you: I never even really thought of Bisping too much. Not that I didn’t respect him as a fighter -- I do. It was just that it didn’t cross my mind because there’s so many things happening all the time. People talk about Chael and Brian Stann, and sometimes people are focused on the TUF show. But I think Bisping could be a good opportunity. GSP could be a good opportunity. There’s a lot of great opportunities, and I do think the Chael fight could potentially sell. It could be a big seller. I think it could be a huge pay-per-view. So I see all angles of it, but I’m just expressing what Anderson has talked to me about. That’s how he feels.”
On whether Sonnen calling out Silva at UFC 136 actually hurt his chances of getting the fight: “I don’t know if it hurt it. At the end of the day, Dana and the fans decide who they want to see. I think eventually, our opinion is that we don’t think Chael should get a shot yet. There’s other guys out there. … I’ve been hearing a bunch of different people. Let someone try that hasn’t fought for the belt yet. Why do we have to keep repeating these fighters? We fought Rich Franklin twice. We’ll probably end up having to fight Chael twice. We’re going to end up fighting probably Dan Henderson twice. It’s just like, it would be nice to see some new faces in there getting a crack at it.”
On whether the money a rematch with Sonnen could generate makes a difference: “Money talks to [Silva] of course, but that’s not his main objective.”
On whether a Silva-Sonnen rematch, if it’s made, would take place Super Bowl weekend: “That’s really hard to say. I think we’re still -- I don’t think it’s going to happen. It could happen, but we’ll just have to cross that bridge when it comes. It could happen, though. We haven’t really talked about it yet.”
On how much longer Silva will fight: “I think we’re going to take it one day at a time. It’s really hard to say, but as of right now, he has four fights on his contract and right now he doesn’t have any interest to renew. He just wants to take one fight at a time, but it wouldn’t surprise me if it ended up being only four fights.”
Listen to the full interview (beginning at 2:43).