Last night the world learned to respect Antonio Silva. Watching him wear down, batter and finally stop the legendary Fedor Emelianenko made fans of MMA realize that Silva is a force to be reckoned with. With the win over Emelianenko he advances to the semi-finals of the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix where he will face the winner of Alistair Overeem vs Fabricio Werdum.
Silva is a 31 year old Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt who trains out of the American Top Team. Prior to getting a win over Fedor Emelianenko he was best known for having been the sole EliteXC heavyweight champion and notching a decision win over Andrei Arlovski.
Silva has been beaten twice in his career. First by Eric Pele in Bodog Fights in 2006 in a fight many believe was stopped too soon. Silva's second loss came to Fabricio Werdum in November of 2009 by decision.
Silva's reign as EliteXC champ was marred by his testing positive for Boldenone, an anabolic steroid, and being suspended for one year. He ignored the suspension and fought in Japan but suffered no adverse consequences from US Athletic Commissions upon his return. He suffers from acromegaly and claimed the positive result was a by-product of treatments he receives for that condition.