Wanderlei Silva to 185?

There has been much speculation about Wanderlei Silva dropping to 185 after his fight with Keith Jardine.  A loss would all but ensure that.  I am a Wanderlei fan, I as a MMA fan appreciate his hardwork and think he is a great ambassador for MMA and a classy guy.  I respect him because he is one of the few legends of the sport.  In his time he was one of the most feared guys in MMA.  The UFC has had a problem finding marketable opponents for Anderson Silva at middleweight.  There is no other divison with a more clear number one, but also Rich Franklin an Dan Henderson are a clear head and shoulders above the rest of the pack and Anderson has beaten them.  Wanderlei would give a marquee match-up and another contender in middleweight.  I know many people think Yushin Okami is next for Anderson and maybe he is, but if the UFC can find a different guy then Wanderlei may be him.  You throw in a guy like Bisping who just dropped and the middleweight divison is bolstered greatly.  MMAweekly has a quote from Wanderlei himself on the possible move and it is very interesting…

Maybe it’s possible after this fight to fight at 185. The guys in my division are much tall, and it’s hard. The guys are stronger, but I’ve fought in the division many times, many years. Here, the guys are much stronger. Maybe I’m going to fight next time at 185. I don’t know. As long as they have good opponents for me at 185 too, maybe next time I go down. I don’t know…. It’s hard to go down and fight the champion. I need to fight other guys first. I trained with him a long time ago. We are friends, but a job is a job and friends are friends. In the future maybe it’s possible to fight with him.”

Intersting that he isn’y necessarily expecting a title shot right away.  He could get one if he wanted one even with a loss to Jardine.  If he beats Jardine it throws a wrench in this as he becomes a top 3 contender at light heavyweight and has his confidence back.  Wanderlei has lost his last 3 fights, and this fight is big for him.  Granted he has lost to Cro Cop, Henderson and Liddell — cream of the crop.  I think he beats Jardine and still may jump down with confidence and hype.  Interesting also is the talk of Franklin moving up.  I’d like to see a Franklin vs. Wanderlei, Franklin vs. Henderson, or Wanderlei vs. Henders re-match at 185.  I am all for it.  Wanderlei vs. Silva is main event worthy, and may be the UFC’s alternative to Okami, even though Okami has probably earned the shot.


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