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‘Minotauro’ Nogueira not surprised Anderson Silva bested Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.: ‘We expected this’

GUADALAJARA, Mexico – While many were in awe that Anderson Silva defeated former boxing champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. in his own game,  Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira was not.

The former Pride FC heavyweight champion and UFC interim titleholder expected to see his friend Silva defeat Chavez Jr. in their pay-per-view clash at Saturday’s Tribute to the Kings.

Silva took on the former WBC middleweight champion in an eight-round professional boxing bout. The former UFC middleweight champion defeated Chavez Jr. via split decision. It was his first boxing fight in 16 years and the first time he competed outside the UFC since 2006.

Speaking with MMA Junkie, ‘Minotauro’ Nogueira said he was confident Silva was going to get the job done against the much younger and experienced boxer Chavez Jr.

“He did well, he did great tonight,” Nogueira explained. “He trained for like three months, maybe four. He dedicated the time. He’s not a boxer, he’s an MMA guy and he came out here and he showed a two-time world champ in his house, his hometown.

“The altitude here is different, so the first week he felt it but he came here three weeks before. So the first week Anderson felt it a little bit, but the last two weeks he trained really high (level), so it didn’t surprise us that he won the fight. We expected this, we expected it.”

“This guy is 45 years old, man. The other guy is way younger, 10 years younger. He’s a professional and a former champion, so Anderson did really well.”

Nogueira enjoyed watching Silva make a successful return to boxing and more than that, bring back his old self.

“He was having fun, he was controlling the distance and he was confident he was going to get to his opponent,” Nogueira said. “The first two rounds he studied the game and then he got confident and won the fight. It was amazing, it was amazing.”

“Yeah, I want to see him fight again (in boxing) and he could fight again this year.”

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