Back when Chael Sonnen was a Middleweight, most of his time was occupied by spitting venom towards the UFC Middleweight champion, Anderson Silva, and his home country of Brazil. Even before their first fight at UFC 117, where Chael was just moments away from pulling off a monumental upset, the rivalry between the men was real.
Once Chael had showed that Anderson Silva was not immortal, and could possibly be beaten, his self-proclaimed ‘truth talking’ went to an all time high. No one was safe from Sonnen’s verbal shots, especially Anderson Silva. By the time the two were set to rematch at UFC 148, the rivalry was at a breaking point. After Silva dispatched of Sonnen in the second round, Sonnen moved up to Light Heavyweight and their rivalry turned into mutual respect.
Ultimately, a new rivalry commenced for Sonnen with yet another Brazilian fighter, Wanderlei Silva. After heated exchanges over the last year, Dana White announced that the two men would coach against each other on TUF: Brazil 3. Earlier this week we reported that Sonnen invited Anderson Silva to coach alongside him as part of his coaching staff for TUF.
Today, news broke that Silva has officially declined Sonnen’s offer. At the UFC 168 conference call, Silva had this to say: (courtesy of MMAfighting):
Yes, Chael called Ed (Soares, Silva’s manager). Unfortunately, I won’t be in Brazil so I won’t be able to accept his invitation. But it would be great for the sport because all the athletes on the house will be Brazilian. It would be an honor to be on the show, no matter on which team, to help the sport and the athletes that are going to be there.
Everything is possible, but my focus is on this fight with Chris Weidman, so I’m not thinking about anything else.
Although this is a disappointment, it was likely inevitable. Anderson is preparing for the biggest fight in his career against the only man that has ever defeated him inside the Octagon. His focus has to be 100% on Chris Weidman and not on Chael Sonnen, TUF: Brazil, or Roy Jones Jr.