The stakes are high for Silva in this bout because he could get a shot at the UFC Middleweight Title with a victory.
“(UFC President Dana White) came to Los Angeles to talk to me,” Silva said to ESPN. “I said to him, ‘Why am I going to take this fight?’ And Dana said, ‘You know, you win this fight, you go to the title belt.’ I said, ‘OK, now you are talking good business for me.’”
Silva held the UFC Middleweight Title for over six years, winning it at UFC 64 in October of 2006 and losing it at UFC 162 in July of 2013.
While a title shot is looming with a potential win at UFC 234, it hasn’t stopped Silva from realizing what a challenge Adesanya is going to be.
“This is a great challenge for me,” Silva said. “My entire life, since I started martial arts, I have taken the best challenge. Israel is a young guy and the future of the sport. Everybody is talking about Israel. I think this is the best fight in the sport.”
UFC 234 takes place on Saturday, February 9 from the Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne, Australia with Robert Whittaker and Kelvin Gastelum headlining. Fightful is providing live coverage of the event, with a post-show podcast to follow.