Opinion: Why Chael Sonnen vs. Wanderlei Silva Should Happen
By Michael Hatamoto
Chael Sonnen is no longer a title contender in the UFC middleweight or light heavyweight divisions, and appears only interested in a few select fights.
Who should he fight next?
I think it’d be insane for Sonnen to get back into the octagon and stand across the cage from anyone but Wanderlei Silva right now – a rivalry that has been brewing for a number of years – and it would be an easy fight to sell to MMA fans.
Besides the obvious marketing tactic of this being a grudge match between the ‘American Gangster’ and the old school Brazilian MMA fighter, this is a fight that would be a great clash of styles. Sonnen has a strong wrestling base and top control he uses to dominate opponents on the ground, while Silva prefers to use his Muay Thai background and avoid the ground.
Could Silva do enough damage to threaten Sonnen, or will Sonnen be able to avoid the punches, kicks and knees in favor of a ground war.
If scheduled, the fight could take place at middleweight or light heavyweight, though it sounds like Sonnen would prefer to stay at light heavyweight.
Even if he does decide to step away from the sport as a fighter, expect Sonnen to stay involved as a coach, commentator, or some other role. UFC President Dana White noted that FOX is a big fan of Sonnen, as he’s able to not only draw attention but can intelligently break down fights.