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Say it again: Anderson Silva's greatest soundbytes

Given his past history, in a war of words, soft-spoken former middleweight champion Anderson Silva would likely come out on the losing end to his opponent in the UFC FIGHT PASS main event in London on Feb. 27, the always loquacious Michael Bisping. But fights are won and lost in the Octagon, and that’s where Silva has built a resume marking him as one of the best to ever put on the gloves.

Despite this, “The Spider” has had plenty to say over the years about his style, his upbringing, and his place in the MMA history books, and here’s a sampling from the Brazilian icon.

ON ENTERING THE UFC (2006)

“I have fought in Japan, England, and all over Brazil, and I’ve always wanted to fight in the US. I felt the UFC was the most well-known organization in the world and has some of the best middleweights. So I want to fight the best.”

ON THE SECRET OF HIS STRIKING - POST-CHRIS LEBEN (2006)

“It’s training. Everyone has their own talents and their own skills, and this just comes with hard work and training.”

(Seconds Later)

“I’m one of the X-Men (Laughs).”
 

ON THE FIRST FIGHT WITH RICH FRANKLIN (2006)

“That fight was a huge turning point in my career. It fulfilled a lifetime dream of mine and has changed my life in many ways. It has also given me a lot more responsibility having the belt.”

ON THE FINISH OF THE FIRST FRANKLIN FIGHT (2007)

“I wasn’t really surprised by anything. I try to be prepared for anything, and I was able to take advantage of some of his mistakes. Like I have said before, it's like a chess game - you move the wrong piece, and it's over.”

A MOMENT IN TIME (2007)

“Basically, having the belt right now is just a moment in time, and you’ve got to stay hungry, stay motivated, and stay humble. I take every fight as just another fight because a lot of times, when you stop fighting, people forget about you. So I know that this is just a moment in time and I’m staying focused on keeping the belt as long as I can.”

ON BRUCE LEE (2007)

“He (Lee) made you believe in what he was able to do.”

ON FAMILY (2007)

“I came from very humble beginnings, but I received a lot of love and support from my family. At first they didn’t want me to become a fighter, but eventually they realized that it was something that I loved to do, and that I was actually pretty good. My upbringing has made me appreciate, and not take for granted, everything that is happening to me.”

ON SPIDER MAN (2007)

“I love comic books and I have every Spider Man comic book series since 1984. I listed him as my hero because he was the only Superhero that had bills to pay. Batman was rich, and Superman was from another planet.”

ON PRACTICAL JOKES (2007)

“The best joke I pulled on someone was when I hid my cousin’s tuxedo on his wedding day and made him stress out and show up late. It’s just the way that I am. I enjoy making people laugh.”

HIS BIGGEST INFLUENCE (2007)

“Nosredna was the biggest influence in my life (Nosredna is Anderson spelled backwards). He always believed in me.”

ON FIGHTING IN THE UFC (2007)

“Ever since I watched Royce fight in UFC 1, it was a dream of mine to compete in the UFC.”

ON HIS UNORTHODOX STRIKING (2007)

“That’s what makes a difference. I don’t think I’m better than anyone; I just like to prove to myself that things I imagine can be done. Expect the unexpected.”

ON WHO WINS A FIGHT BETWEEN SILVA AND HIS CLONE (2008)

“That’s a very difficult question and I can’t even imagine the outcome of the fight. It’s better just to imagine it in my head since it’s not reality and I wouldn’t know how to beat myself.”

ON BEING THE BEST (2008)

“I don’t think I am the best. I’m far from being the best in the world. People can say what they want, but I don’t believe I am yet. I can only say that when I stop fighting, I still have a lot to go through, and there are still many great fighters out there. There is no world-best. And no one is unbeatable. We all want perfection but it’s almost impossible and I am after it at every moment. I always try to improve but it’s very difficult. I think that there is still a lot to be done, a lot to be lived and improvements to make. It’s a big responsibility and I try not to think of it.”

HIS PERSONAL HIGHLIGHT (2008)

“I don’t think I’ve had my highlight yet. I am still a small star in the constellation, and I think I’m still far from the UFC hall of stars. But I am getting there slowly.”

ON THE COTE AND LEITES FIGHTS (2009)

“I went up there to do my job to defend the title, and I can’t really control what the other fighter’s going to do. I have to be prepared for every situation, and it’s just unfortunate that those guys came in with that strategy.”

 Don’t miss Silva vs Bisping! The biggest fight in the history of UFC FIGHT PASS originates from London on February 27

ON BOOING (2009)

“Sometimes when you’re standing outside of the Octagon it’s a lot different than when you're inside the Octagon. You know what I went in there to do – to do my job, and I’ve got my strategy. At the end of the day, yes, I’m there for the fans, but I’m the one that’s putting my body and my life in danger every time I step into the Octagon. So a lot of times, when people aren’t as educated in this sport, it’s really hard for them to understand. But I feel I went in there and did my job, and if people are booing, it’s from a lack of understanding of the sport because I went out there and executed a good game plan. It was just unfortunate that my opponents didn’t fight back.”

ON THE SONNEN FIGHT (2011)

“I was thinking of what I had to do to finish the fight, defend my title and go home healthy.”

ON MMA IN BRAZIL (2011)

“The sport has grown and matured a lot. A lot of things that needed to change have changed and it created a true sport that has a huge fanbase all over the world and has grown immensely in Brazil in the past few years. I am grateful to make a living from what I love to do.”

PRE-SONNEN II (2012)

“He didn’t affect me personally, but I’m just going to make him pay and make him eat everything that he said, not only about myself but about our country, about everything. I’m going to make him pay and make sure that he never disrespects any fighter, not only Brazilian, but any fighter. I’m going to beat him maybe the way his parents should’ve beat him to teach him some manners because he’s disrespectful.”

PRE-WEIDMAN I (2013)

“Every new fight is a new challenge and it’s really going to be up to whoever is better prepared and whoever feels better that night. You know, win or lose, a loss and a win are always walking side by side. But I’ve been doing this since I was eight years old and there are always new challenges, there are always new things. And my biggest concern is going out there and doing better for myself. I’m not concerned about what my opponents do. I want to better myself and I want to overcome anything that I have to.”

FIGHT NIGHT (2013)

“It’s normal. Just another day for working.”

PRESSURE (2013)

“There’s no pressure from the UFC or people in particular; it’s just the pressure overall that once you start winning, you can’t lose. People expect you to win once you’re winning a lot of fights. Being an elite athlete, you’ve always got to be winning.You can never rest. Never.”

LOSING CONTROL - on the first Weidman bout (2013)

“I was trying to impose my fighting rhythm and impose my technique, which I was hoping was going to be better than his, but at some point I lost control of it. I don’t know if it was the fact that I’ve been doing this for so long or that I had a lot of pressure on me and a lot of responsibility. I don’t know what it was. It was something that took me out of my martial art mindset. When you lose control of something you’re so good at, that you’ve been doing for so long and been in control of for so long, you’ve got to step out and really look at what you’re doing right and what you’re doing wrong. Like an elite sniper, you can’t lose control when you’re right there in the game.”

LOSING THE FIRST WEIDMAN FIGHT (2013)

“Some people say it was a lucky punch, some people say he’d never land it again, but the fact is, he trained for that and he got it. I have no regrets. I think in life you can look back and think about what you could have done more, but you can’t regret things. It was a chance for me to look back and be able to mature and analyze a lot of things in my life.”

HIS MOTIVATION (2010)

“My motivation is to be one of the best mixed martial arts fighters of all-time. Everyone is always mentioning that I’m the best pound for pound here or there, and having that type of label on me makes me very motivated. So I plan to come out here and show to my coaches and to the world everything that I’ve trained to do in the fight.”

More about Fight Night London: High stakes as Bisping, Silva set to fight | Michael Bisping's defining moments | Bisping's greatest soundbytes | Watch free fight: Silva vs. Bonnar

ON PRE-FIGHT JITTERS (2007)

“No nerves. At that moment there’s nowhere to run. If you trained, you trained; if you didn’t, you’re screwed.”

DON’T MESS WITH THE SPIDER (2007)

“To be honest with you, I really don’t like to hurt my opponents; this just happens to be our job. But if somebody disrespects me they will pay for it. I promise.”

THE ULTIMATE GOAL (2007)

“My ultimate goal is to go down in history as the most efficient and technical fighter that has ever fought.”

Special thanks to Ed Soares and Derek Kronig Lee for their translation help over the years.
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