Anderson Silva / UFC

Anderson Silva, the Brazilian MMA icon, enjoyed a dominant and illustrious career, establishing himself as one of the sport’s most celebrated stars. However, it has been more than a year since we last saw Silva in competitive action. The wait for his return continues, but fans will have the opportunity to witness a rare public appearance by the legend as he is set to be inducted into the prestigious UFC Hall of Fame later this month.

Silva’s absence from the Octagon has left a void in the promotion, as they struggle to replicate the star power he once brought to the sport. Silva consistently held the title of a fan favorite and a betting favorite in his fights, captivating not only Brazilian fans but also gaining recognition from the best sportsbooks in Brazil. His exceptional skills and dominance in the sport often resulted in him being given favorable betting odds. While his competitive career may be on hold, let’s take a look at what Anderson Silva has been up to lately and what the future may hold for this MMA legend.

UFC Career

Silva is regarded as one of the best MMA stars of all time by a number of key figures within the sport, including UFC president Dana White and commentator Joe Rogan. The Brazilian MMA star dominated the middleweight division throughout his professional career with the UFC, as he still holds the longest title reign in the history of the promotion at 2,457 days.

Silva would hold the UFC Middleweight title between 2006 and 2013, winning a record 16 straight title fights during that time. Silva landed the UFC gold on just his second fight in the promotion, as he scored a stunning KO finish against Rich Franklin, before dispatching talented opponents within the distance such as Travis Lutter, Nate Marquardt, and Dan Henderson.

Silva was a formidable rival throughout this period, with few fighters able to take the Brazilian the distance. However, his final successful title defense came against Stephan Bonnar at UFC 153, before he would lose back-to-back title fights against Chris Weidman, with the latter coming following a leg injury. Silva would win just once over his final nine fights in the UFC, with that success coming by unanimous decision against Derek Brunson.

UFC Departure

Rumors were rife from the start of 2019 that Silva was beginning to explore other options away from UFC, and those rumors ultimately proved to be true after three straight defeats against Israel Adesanya, Jared Cannonier, and Uriah Hall.

In November 2020, it was announced by the UFC that he had been released from his current UFC deal, which enabled him to move on to new challenges. However, his legacy within the promotion remains intact, and he will be honored later this year when he is inducted into the 2023 UFC Hall of Fame.

Post-UFC Career

After announcing his retirement from MMA in 2021 during an interview with MMA Fighting, Silva announced that he would be returning to boxing, a sport that he was previously involved in back in the 90s. He would fight on two occasions before turning to a professional career in MMA, losing to Osmar Teixeira, before defeating Julio Cesar De Jesus in 2005.

The former UFC star would make a winning return to the ring, as he landed a success against Julio Cesar Chavez Jr by split decision. Jones dictated the fight throughout landing, and throwing more punches than his rival. Jones continued his dominant streak in the ring in September 2021, as he scored a stunning first-round KO against former UFC Light Heavyweight champion Tito Ortiz.

The former MMA star then returned to the ring in September 2022, as he took on YouTube star Jake Paul. It was a mega-money fight for both athletes in Arizona, but the social media star eventually landed the decision, as he was crowned the unanimous decision victor in Phoenix. Since then, Silva has returned to the boxing ring in an exhibition format, knocking down Bruno Machado before no winner was declared in May 2022.

What Does The Future Hold for Silva?

Fans that are hoping to see Silva back in the octagon will be left disappointed, as it looks incredibly unlikely that he will be making a U-turn on his decision to retire from the sport. We will likely see him back in the boxing ring in the near future, while the former UFC star has constantly teased a run in the WWE.

However, his main focus looks to be on the business side of things at present, as he is set to join forces with Jake Paul to create an association for MMA fighters. The association will look to give greater power to the fighters that are risking their lives in professional bouts, promising assurances when it comes to pay and healthcare. Paul promised that he would work together with Silva in this venture following their fight in 2022, and the Brazilian has recently revealed that plans are moving ahead.