Note: The video’s background is the way it is because of potential copyright issues.
A couple of years ago when I was conducting the 2013 “Fighter’s Circle MMA Awards” – this year’s ballot opens in December by the way – I had a couple of bouts that I thought were a shoe in for “Fight of the Year” – mostly Jon Jones vs. Alexander Gustafsson vs. Jon Jones and Johny Hendricks vs. Georges St-Pierre. As the deadline for votes was coming closer, I noticed many fans were submitting Mark Hunt vs. Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva in the “Other” option. Hunt vs. Silva ended up winning. Once I watched the fight, I could see why fans picked it.
To sum it up, Hunt vs. Silva was a brutal, disgusting, heart-wrenching fight that kept fans on the edge of their seats. It was a bout that we were used to seeing in sports movies. In the end, the judges ruled it a majority draw. Silva ended up failing his post-fight drug test, giving Hunt a $170,000 bonus.
So when I heard that Hunt-Silva II was in the works. the fight fan in me let out a noise of pure joy. Although almost two years have passed, perhaps now is the right time for Hunt vs. Silva II. While everyone is excited for the Ronda Rousey vs. Holly Holm and Joanna Jedrzejczyk vs. Valerie Letourneau title bouts – as they should – Hunt vs. Silva II is a fight that is going to capture everyone’s attention.
Since the first bout, both fighters have gone 1-2 in their last three fights. Bigfoot lost back-to-back fights against former UFC champions Andrei Arlovski and Frank Mir – losing both via knockout. He snapped the losing streak after finishing Soa Palelei in the second round of their fight at UFC 190.
Meanwhile the “Super Samoan” scored a walk-away knockout over Roy Nelson. He comes into the Silva rematch with back-to-back TKo losses to Fabricio Werdum – in an interim title bout – and Stipe Miocic. The Miocic fight was brutal to watch for Hunt fans as Miocic picked him apart. Some folks called for Hunt to hang up the gloves. This is a contrast to Silva, who breathed new life into his career with his performance in the Palelei fight.
I would have been comfortable if Hunt chose to retire, but the Silva rematch is a good one to add to his fight resume, even if he’s coming to the end of his combat sports career. Of course a win could reinvigorate his career as well.
For my UFC 193 viewing options, I’m going to watch it with Jacklyn. We may go over to Bri’s house and watch it with friends. The reason I bring this up is because most of these cats haven’t seen a fight as brutal as Hunt vs. Silva, with the exception of the recent welterweight title bout between Rory MacDonald and Robbie Lawler. Of course this match might be slower with more haymakers – both Silva and Hunt have good striking and brutal KO power.
As with most heavyweight bouts, this is going to be quick or go the distance. In addition to their power, Hunt and Silva are durable fighters who can take a lot of punishment. Bigfoot has the edge in grappling – with three submission wins and black belts in both judo and Brazilian jiu jitsu. That said, Hunt’s takedown defense has come a long way since the start of his UFC run.
There’s no doubt that Hunt vs. Silva II is a great companion to what will surely be a potential “Event of the Year” candidate. The only downside to it, is it will only be three rounds.