It seems Claudio Silva is finally ready to begin making more than one appearance per year in the UFC’s Octagon. After a string of injuries forced ‘Hannibal’ to stay away from the cage from three and a half years, the 36-year-old did return in May 2018 to score a submission win over Nordine Taleb, but a back injury sidelined Silva for the remainder of the year, even cancelling a September match Ramazan Emeev.
Now expected to take on Danny Roberts at UFC Fight Night 147 in London, Silva tells Bloody Elbow he is ready to move on from the injuries and not only expects to fight at full potential on Saturday night, but Hannibal will also look for a quick way to tap his opponent out.
“I feel good, completely recovered from that injury. I got hurt, you know? It’s a high impact sport, so that’s how it goes. But everything is okay, now. I’m relaxed and ready to fight again. I feel very motivated, I’m very well trained. I trained a lot for this fight. I made some changes to my game and I can’t wait to put all of that to practice. I always go for the finish and I want to finish this one as quickly as possible.”
“He’s a striker, but he knows his way around the mat, too. ‘ Silva said. “However, I don’t think he’ll try to grapple with me. I’m a ground specialist, a black belt from Brazil. I don’t think he would like to stay on the bottom with me, but he’s a tough guy, for sure.”
Currently on a three-fight winning streak in the Octagon, Silva holds wins over Nordine Taleb, Leon Edwards and Brad Scott, which Claudio feels could have earned him a challenge against a ranked opponent - especially after losing three years of his prime nursing injuries, however, the way Hannibal sees it, there’s no other way around it but to keep on winning fights.
“I wanted a top 10 opponent, for sure, but it’s the UFC, you know how it goes. Some guys win seven, eight fights in a row and don’t get a title shot. I’m just an employee and I have to take one step at a time. Whatever the UFC decides for me, that’s it. I can’t force anything nor do I have the power for that. Whatever they want is what I want.”
Claudio Silva is expected to take on Danny Roberts at UFC Fight Night 147, in London, England, on March 16. The card will be headlined by a welterweight bout between Darren Till and Jorge Masvidal.