UFC 153: Silva vs. Bonnar Saturday, October 13 – 11:00 p.m. ET
HSBC Arena – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Anderson Silva (30-4) vs. Stephan Bonnar (17-7) Light heavyweight bout
Line: Silva -1100, Bonnar +600
Arguably the most dominant MMA fighter in the world will return to the Octagon as Anderson Silva puts his light heavyweight belt on the line in the headline bout on UFC 153’s main card against Stephan Bonnar on Saturday night in Rio.
There is no way to undersell Silva’s dominance—he owns records for the most consecutive UFC wins at 16 and title defenses at 10. He first won the belt way back in 2006 and has never looked back. He received arguably his best challenge from Chael Sonnen in 2010, but he eventually finished that off with a fifth-round submission, and then with a second-round TKO in a rematch on July 7, Silva’s most-recent bout. In between, he made easy work of Vitor Belfort (KO) and Yushin Okami (TKO). Bonnar enters this fight coming off three consecutive wins, two of which were decisions. But none of those fights were against elite contenders, and when Bonnar has faced the best-of-the-best competition, he has struggled. He has lost to Forest Griffin both times he fought him and has also lost to Jon Jones and Rashad Evans. Additionally, Bonnar has not fought since November 2011 prior to this fight, coming out of unofficial retirement just for the chance to battle Silva. Although fighting Silva is the opportunity of a lifetime, it’s difficult to see Bonnar having any chance here. Play on the heavy chalk SILVA to retain his title.
Silva wins, and he does not mess around. More than half of his career victories are via knockout, while he also owns six submissions to his name. The base of his attacks are his strikes, which is based in his boxing pedigree, but he also incorporates Jiu Jitsu, Judo and Taekwondo. And despite being 37 years old, two years older than Bonnar, Silva has shown no signs of slowing down. Take “The Spider” here.
If "American Psycho" Bonnar has one thing going for him in this fight, it’s his size. At 6-foot-4, 205 pounds, he owns a 20-pound weight advantage and stands two inches taller than Silva. Bonnar’s most famous fight was his first against Griffin in the first season of The Ultimate Fighter, a bout that earned 2005 fight of the year honors. Bonnar lost, but showed he was game for any opponent. Too bad he has yet to register any sort of marquee victory in his career that would make him an encouraging play here at such long odds.