UFC 134: Looking back at Anderson Silva's toughest tests in the UFCPosted on August 21, 2011, 07:24 AM by Anton Gurevich
Next weekend, Anderson "The Spider" Silva will return to his homeland, headlining a stacked top-to-bottom UFC 134 fight card in Rio de Janeiro. This time, Andrson Silva will be facing the Japanese veteran Yushin "Thunder" Okami. The fight against Okami will be Anderson Silva's 14th inside the Octagon, and his 9th UFC Middleweight title defense. Silva is widely considered as the best Pound for Pound fighter on the planet, an unbeatable warrior who destroyed (or at least ridiculed) everyone he faced inside the Octagon.
There's not many of them, but there are some fighters who came closer than others to beating "The Spider". From Patrick Cote to Chael Sonnen, we take a look back at Anderson Silva's toughest tests inside the UFC Octagon. Will Yushin Okami add his name to the list? We'll have to wait for August 27th to find out.
Patrick “The Predator” Cote
When: UFC 90
At UFC 90 MMA fans around the world were introduced to “The Dancing Spider” version of Anderson Silva. Cote was not impressed by Silva’s disco moves, and kept coming forward looking to trade with a somewhat bored UFC Middleweight Champion. The French-Canadian was not afraid to absorb Anderson Silva’s power, responded with strikes of his own, and was the first fighter to drag the “unbeatable” Champ into Round 3. This fight had a very unfortunate ending for Patrick Cote (injured knee in Round 3), but I truly believe that “The Predator” would’ve been able to give Anderson Silva something to fight for.
Travis “Serial Killer” Lutter
When: UFC 67
UFC Middleweight title encounter between Anderson Silva and Travis Lutter was changed into a non-title bout after the “Serial Killer” missed weight by two pounds. Despite being visibly exhausted from his attempts to make weight, Lutter scored two important takedowns against Silva, and later found himself raining bombs from full mount towards the end of Round 1. However, Lutter’s Cinderella Story quickly ended in Round 2 with Anderson Silva locking a vicious triangle choke that forced the challenger to tap out (via Elbows) without throwing a single significant strike in that round.
Dan “Hendo” Henderson
When: UFC 82
Prior to Chael Sonnen’s quest for glory, Dan Henderson was widely considered as Anderson Silva’s toughest test inside the Octagon. “All-American” was able to neutralize Silva’s skills in Round 1, and to perfectly execute his gameplan with two important takedowns. Dan Henderson ground and pounded Anderson Silva with 41 to 9 strikes, but just like Travis Lutter at UFC 67, he was unable to finish “The Spider”. Hendo paid the price in Round 2, losing the fight via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 4:52 minutes mark.
When: UFC 117
Chael Sonnen promised and delivered a fight of epic proportions at the Oracle Arena in Oakland, California. Uncle Chael combined the courage of Patrick Cote and the gameplan of Dan Henderson to pummel Anderson Silva throughout 4-and-half rounds. Sonnen outstruck the Champion 89 to 29, in what could’ve been one of the most amazing victories in the history of Mixed Martial Arts. But that’s the rule of thumb (or dumb) against Anderson Silva – you finish, or get finished. “The Spider” submitted Sonnen with an Armbar/Triangle combination, to extend his UFC winning streak to 12, and title defenses to 7. Chael Sonnen will corner Yushin Okami, with hopes on providing "Thunder" the necessary wisdom to defeat his arch nemesis.