It's official, the man once referred to as the "greatest of-all time" is replacing his successor. Anderson Silva has stepped in to face UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Daniel Cormier at UFC 200 in place of Jon "Bones" Jones.
Jones was removed from UFC 200 after a possible USADA violation, and Daniel Cormier was left without an opponent. After the likes of Michael Bisping, Gegard Mousasi and Dan Henderson all offered, the UFC landed on former Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva, who happens to be undefeated at light heavyweight. The bout will be a three-round, non-title affair.
Silva appeared at the UFC Fight Night 90 post-fight presser and said he hadn't been training that hard, but is still ready for the fight.
"I think I'm in good shape and I don't want Daniel or anyone else to think that I'm underestimating him or coming in here to try to challenge a champion. I'm not doing any of that. I'm here to challenge myself, and I think that I haven't trained in a few months, but I think that I'm in good condition to go in there and put on a good fight," said via a translator.
Silva also indicated that if he were to win at UFC 200, he'd be interested in a championship fight against Cormier down the line. This is quite the turning of the tides for Silva, who was forced to withdraw from UFC 198 due to gall bladder surgery. UFC President Dana White said that the potential of a five-round fight was discussed.
"We talked about it," White explained. "If Anderson comes in and would stop Cormier in the first three rounds, it would be for the title. But Anderson's philosophy was, ‘listen, if I beat Daniel Cormier, people are going know I'm the guy anyway.' But, it's a little bit better getting that belt. We have to agree to disagree on that one. He wants to fight three rounds."
It was also mentioned that Daniel Cormier offered the fight at 210 pounds, but Silva wanted it at 205.
Silva and Cormier will do battle at UFC 200 on July 9 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.