Ex-middleweight champion Chris Weidman, a gritty wrestler from Long Island, New York, rose to prominence when he shockingly knocked out former legendary divisional kingpin Anderson “The Spider” Silva back at UFC 162 in 2013.
Weidman would then once again topple Silva at UFC 168 after “The Spider” suffered a gruesome leg injury, giving “The All-American” back to back milestone victories.
The New Yorker would secure two more title defenses over the likes of Lyoto Machida and Vitor Belfort before surrendering his strap to reigning champion Luke Rockhold at last December’s UFC 194.
Weidman will get his chance at redemption when he meets Rockhold in a rematch at the upcoming UFC 199 (June 4, 2016), and the former champion admits that this rematch lies bigger than his bouts with Silva:
“This is a do or die fight for me,” said Weidman. “I have to go out there and dominate him. This is my career on the line. This is bigger than my Anderson Silva fights.” Weidman said on a recent edition of Inside MMA.
The first fight saw the two men go back and forth for much of the opening minutes before an ill-advised spinning kick attempt by Weidman gave Rockhold the upper hand later in the bout.
The Serra-Longo product had also apparently come into the fight with a broken foot, also previously admitting that his mental state may not have been where it should have.
Now, however, the former boss feels as if he’s back to normal, and ready to recapture glory:
“I know where I was at for that last fight,” added Weidman. “I know my potential. I know where I was physically and mentally at and I know where I can be at.”
Will Weidman be able to fix his mistakes and come out on top in the rematch?