The main card for UFC 153 went through some very exciting changes last week. On Tuesday, both headliner and Jose Aldo and Quinton Jackson were forced from the card due to injury. A few days later the UFC announced that Middleweight champion Anderson Silva and former Heavyweight champion Antonio Nogueira stepped up to fight on short notice. Silva will face TUF veteran Stephan Bonnar in a 3 round fight to headline the card and Minotauro will return against Dave Herman after a 10 month layoff. Fabio Maldonado also came forward to face Glover Teixeira.
This afternoon, all the fighters gathered in Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil for a conference with Brazilian media. Tatame's Guilherme Cruz posted quotes via his Twitter. First, Cruz reported Anderson Silva's thoughts on his current and possible future opponents:
On Chris Weidman
Everything has it’s time. He’ll have his opportunity to fight for the belt. Maybe I fight next before he gets the shot, I lose and he fights someone else. We don’t know. I can fight Bonnar, lose and say: ‘you know what, I don’t want it anymore’. Or maybe I win and way ‘I don’t want this anymore’. Or maybe drop to welterweight or move up to heavyweight. Anything can happen. Every UFC fighter will have their chance. You have to work and wait for your opportunity.
I hope that’s my next fight. I believe everybody wants to see that fight
On Stephan Bonnar
I have to be careful. I’ll be heavier, slower and weaker than Bonnar (...) I have to believe I can KO him, but that’s tough. I hope I can do a great good fight for the fans, but that’s not easy
Silva came under fire by some fans for taking the October fight after stating a desire to not return to action before 2013. Weidman leaped into contender discussions after completely dominating Mark Munoz on UFC On Fuel TV 4. However, that potential fight has been summarily dismissed by Silva and his management in favor of focusing on a super fight with Welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre.
UFC 153 will take place on October 13 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil at the HSBC Arena.
After the jump, check out what Minotauro Nogueira has to say about his upcoming match against Dave Herman and retirement.
On "Pee Wee" Herman:
He’s a big guy with a mouth bigger than him. He’s talking a lot of crap, but that’s gasoline, it motivates me
According to Cruz, Herman said in an earlier press conference that he plans on submitting Nogueira in the 2nd round of their fight.
I had a lot of reasons to retire, many surgeries, tough fights. I could stop, but I love what I do. I’ll only retire when Anderson retire too (laughs)