Anderson Silva. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
It seems as if Roy Jones Jr and Anderson Silva’s constant quest to fight each other will never end, at least not at this rate. The newest development in the saga comes courtesy of Jones, who according to Silva’s manager, Ed Soares, would be willing to fight “The Spider” instead of the Octagon.
The idea still isn’t sitting well with UFC President Dana White:
“You won’t see a Silva versus Jones fight while Silva is under contract with me,” White said Tuesday. “I don’t want to say anything bad about Roy Jones, I like Roy Jones and was a fan of his, but he mattered like fifteen years ago. He’s not anywhere near the best boxer in the world. He must’ve spent all his money.”
“I could do it, make it huge, make money, but I could have done a fight like this when we were bleeding money [in the early 2000s],” White said. “The fight would make some money, but it hurts MMA in the long term. We don’t do that because we love the sport. That’s a Pride or K-1 matchup. It’s not what we do.”
This isn’t just a matter of White saying no out of the blue. According to the article, the management teams of both Jones and Silva agreed on terms of an MMA match before bringing the idea to White, who promptly shot it down.
While it seems that White would be crazy to do, one has to dig deeper into his potential reasoning. If Dana were to put on a Jones-Silva bout, RJJ would be asking for money, and lots of it. Possibly more than any mixed martial artist has ever been paid. The UFC is already reluctant to hand out the big bucks as it is, and a big payout to Jones could end up forcing other fighters to start speaking up for their fair share.
On top of that, everyone knows that even though the fight will be taking place under MMA rules, Silva would likely opt to stand and trade with Jones, boxing style. Silva has a much better chance with 4 oz. gloves on his hands rather than 16 oz. mitts, but remember that Jones will be wearing the smaller gloves as well. Did Dana make the right decision here? At least in terms of his investment, it’s very possible.
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