Esther Lin, MMA Fighting
Three days away from the event, “The Spider” is clearing the air on what the future might hold. Yes, he might put the gloves on one last time when he faces Hall on Saturday at the UFC APEX. But the future Hall of Famer leaves the door open for more bouts, even if it means parting ways with his current promoter.
“Everybody’s asking this, and the answer will always be the same,” Silva said during an online media scrum with the Brazilian media on Wednesday. “Maybe it’s the last, maybe it’s not. Maybe it’s the last fight in the UFC, yes, in agreement between Dana and I. We’ll see. Maybe I’ll do the other fight I have in my contract, maybe not. Anything can happen.”
“After the fight, we’ll probably see what we’ll do, to continue fighting or not, but my wish is to continue, for sure,” he added. “But let’s wait. Uriah is the focus now, and after that we’ll see the next steps, we’ll talk to Dana, we’ll see what’s doable and what’s not.”
Silva currently has two bouts left on his deal with the company, and he will still be under contract even if he decides to retire from MMA this weekend. Asked if he had sat down with the promoters to negotiate a possible release to pursue other paths in his career, Silva said “everything will be discussed.”
“It’s the correct way to market (the card as my retirement bout), because it might be my last fight in the UFC, but we’ll see,” Silva said. “Let’s wait to see what happens.”
The Brazilian legend admits he was “determined” to retire from MMA “a few months” before his first fight with Chris Weidman in 2013, back when he was the 185-pound titleholder and still had a perfect record in the octagon.
Silva has only won one of eight fights since. But he still believes he has “plenty of wood to burn” if he chooses to continue competing as a professional. He adds “everything is possible” when asked if boxing is an option.
“The fight with Uriah is my focus, and then we’ll see if we really want to stop, if we’ll continue, if we’ll leave the UFC or not,” Silva said. “All that, we’ll find out after the fight. I’ll be able to answer you and other reporters.”