UFC 101 Aftermath: Are Anderson Silva and B.J. Penn Too Dominant?

Silvax-large_mediumThe morning after two utterly dominant performances by UFC champs Anderson Silva and B.J. Penn all the chatter is focused on what can the UFC do to keep fans interested in such dominant fighters?

Michael David Smith says this is an era of dominating champions:

It says that there's never been a time when the UFC has better champions than right now. Penn and Silva, along with welterweight champion Georges St Pierre, light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida and heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar, appear to be just about unstoppable in the Octagon.

But when you look at these UFC champions, you just see five guys who are just about pefect at what they do. Penn, St. Pierre, Silva and Machida have nearly flawless styles. Lesnar is a physical freak of nature. When will one of these guys be beaten?

Ben Fowlkes talks about Anderson Silva and just how good he is:

But the way Silva fought on Saturday night there are very few fighters in any weight class who wouldn't have appeared similarly outclassed. "The Spider" slipped punches as if it were part of a choreographed dance and struck with violent precision whenever he saw even the slightest opening.

After two lackluster title defenses at middleweight, Silva used the move up in weight classes to show that, when he cares to be, he's still the most dominant fighter in the sport.

Dana White and Anderson Silva parried at the post-fight press conference about the possibility of Anderson Silva vs Lyoto Machida, per Sherdog:

"These two are friends," White said, quick to remark on the matter before Silva. "It has nothing to do with friendship. It’s about who’s the best. It’s about competing against somebody else, no different than a basketball game or a football game. If Anderson gets to that point where he starts taking out 205-pounders, I’ll make that fight. I promise you, I’ll make that fight."

...

Silva answered in Portuguese, which Soares translated: "Lyoto’s my friend. He’s my brother, and there’s no way that fight will happen." There was a pause for laughter and to take account of the gamesmanship between fighter and promoter. "And also not just because (Lyoto’s) my friend. (Lyoto would) be a big problem for me."

One has to wonder what Rich Franklin thinks about the prospect of Anderson Silva moving up to light heavyweight. Might be time for Rich to cut some muscle weight and go get his old belt back.

Dave Meltzer speculates that the only two interesting fights on the horizon for Anderson Silva are his teammate Lyoto Machida and one other fighter he isn't likely to get to face:

...Silva's challenges may be at heavier weight classes.

 

The most obvious one would be Silva’s teammate, current light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida...

Another fight that has been quietly speculated about would be one that, due to the nature of the business, can’t happen, with heavyweight kingpin Fedor Emelianenko.

Sadly, that fight is even less likely to happen than Anderson Silva vs Lyoto Machida. Just another reason for the fans to hate Vadim Finkelstein and M-1 Global.

 

Meanwhile, Kevin Iole sings the praises of B.J. Penn:

What Penn proved Saturday is the same thing he proved in 2008 when he destroyed Sean Sherk and Joe Stevenson in lightweight bouts: There may be bigger men alive who can defeat him, and some who could defeat him handily, but there are no men his size at this point who can defeat him.

...Penn remains superior to any lightweight alive. He's an elite boxer, he is even better with his jiu-jitsu and he has great takedown defense.

Franklin McNeil talks about what is next for Penn:

Beating Florian is just the beginning. There are many lightweights eager to take his crown: Gray Maynard, Frankie Edgar and Diego Sanchez, who is likely to get the next crack at Penn.

"The great thing about the 155-pound division is how stacked it is," White said. "And I think Diego Sanchez is probably next in line for a title shot against B.J. It's a great fight."

The buildup will be great. Sanchez is a confident fighter who has been campaigning for a title shot since moving down to lightweight this year. Sanchez (23-2-0) has fought twice at 155 pounds and has looked impressive, but he will have all kinds of problems with the Penn who fought last night.

Ufc_101_medium

Photo by By Jon Kopaloff, Getty Images

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