Bruno Silva feels that going toe-to-toe with former GLORY champion and UFC contender Alex Pereira shortened the list of middleweights willing to face him inside the octagon.
Silva had a 7-fight streak of knockouts going into the clash with Pereira. The past 3 were in the UFC. Pereira lost in March. Silva returns Saturday night against Gerald Meerschaert at UFC San Diego.
“I already imagined our paths would cross eventually,” Silva said of Meerschaert on this week’s episode of MMA Fighting’s Trocacao Franca, revealing that Meerschaert wasn’t the first name offered by UFC matchmaker Mick Maynard. The UFC offered me to fight [Andre Muniz] “Sergipano” in April but I could not fight [due to my medical suspension]..
” They sent me some names but didn’t accept it. Mick did not say but I do know three [fighters that turned it down].. I won’t say who, because it’s not cool, but I know three [turned it down] in two days. And there are others Mick didn’t mention.
“I thought that wouldn’t happen in the UFC. Outside the UFC we saw this: guys looking for easier fights and avoiding difficult fights. It’s the same across the board, with people trying to make a career out of protecting fighters.
“You’ll have to fight the big fish one day or the other. They know it won’t be easy against me, right? They are aware that I will punch them back, if they knock me down. I will then brawl and fight for three more rounds. Not everyone wants a 50-50 fight. They want to win .”
if they can.
Silva believes that going the distance with Pereira, who demolished Sean Strickland months later to earn a shot at 185-pound king Israel Adesanya, made Maynard’s job even harder.
” My Instagram was a madhouse when [Pereira] took out [Strickland],”, he stated. “I think I got 800 followers in a day. A lot of people sending me messages, even people that didn’t like me. “I believed that Poatan was going to kill me, but you are worthy of respect
” I want to become a champion and earn a lot. I do not like taking shortcuts. Every fighter has a story and an idea for their careers. Some want to fight in the UFC for money, others just want to fight in the UFC to get women, and others want to fight in the UFC to say they fight in the UFC. I want to leave a legacy and make a lot of money and fight everybody.”
When Silva was offered Meerschaert as a middleweight, the Brazilian slugger was delighted because “he is very experienced in UFC .”
“That’s the type of fighter I want to fight,” he said. “People that have a name, people that get me ranked or at least closer to the ranking with a win. He has good jiu-jitsu – wrestling isn’t his thing, but he has good takedowns. Although he is a bit sloppy on his feet, he can still do it well. He has a lot of experience, more than 40 MMA fights.
” I’ll need to strike a balance between aggression and calm during this fight. I can’t go there and brawl with him because I would be closing the distance and allowing him to grab me and turn it into a boring fight. This is his fight. Or me hanging high with my head and being punched in the face. Although he is a grappler, he has heavy hands.
” I have to make him hurt and punch him. My goal is to make him crumble in pain. Hit him and hit him smart. This is not a fight. If I smell blood, my goal is to hit him so hard even the pictures hanging on the wall of his house will fall down.”