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Weidman: Who has Anderson actually fought?

ESPN staff
January 22, 2013
MMA Live discuss the middleweight division

Chris Weidman has attempted to lure Anderson Silva into a UFC middleweight title showdown, claiming the Brazilian has not beaten many big names in his career.

Weidman may well find himself at the top of the 185lb contenders list following Michael Bisping's loss to Vitor Belfort. The American is currently recovering from surgery, but is happy to walk directly into a title fight.

Silva has no obvious next opponent and, while the champion appears happy to pursue other ventures until a challenge emerges, the UFC will be keen to keep its top star active. Silva has beaten the likes of Dan Henderson, Chael Sonnen, Belfort and Forrest Griffin in a stellar career, but Weidman is not impressed.

"Everyone's saying I don't have a big name, but if you look at everybody he's fought, he hasn't fought the biggest names in the world. I'm not putting anybody down, but no one was a huge name I don't think," Weidman told the MMA Hour.

"Chael Sonnen is probably the biggest name. I could be totally wrong, but [Patrick] Cote, Demian Maia, Thales Leites, if you go down the list, I think I accomplished more than those guys before they got the title shot.

"Right now I think I'm the most deserving to get it if they want to make the [Silva] fight right away. I just don't know if Anderson Silva will be interested. All the people who think I'm going to get killed by Anderson Silva, eventually I really want to prove those guys wrong."

It is widely believed that the answer to Silva's dominance will be a highly athletic wrestler who can control the champion on the ground, as Sonnen almost managed at UFC 117. Weidman is adamant he is that man, insisting he beats Silva in more than one facet of mixed martial arts.

"I'm not going to start saying Anderson Silva is a chicken and scared of me. I do think I am a bad match-up for him. I think I really have him beat in a lot of areas. I don't think he's faced anybody like me before."

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