MMA legend Anderson Silva is set to face Jake Paul in an eight-round Showtime pay-per-view main event on Saturday, Oc. 29, which will easily be the 47-year-old’s highest-profile outing in a boxing ring.
Silva (3-1, 2 KO as a boxer) was drafted in to face Paul (5-0, 4 KO) after attempts to fight Tommy Fury and Hasim Rahman Jr in early August failed. While it’s Silva’s highest-profile boxing bout to date, some question whether it will be his toughest, as he did legitimately beat Julio Cesar Chavez Jr over eight rounds in 2021 in Mexico, and boxing is just a sliver of his combat sports experience.
The Brazilian fighting icon spoke from training camp about the fight, including how he thinks his experience will help, and saying he will not go in thinking the 25-year-old “Problem Child” Paul will be easy work.
On the differences between training MMA and boxing
“It’s different because you have seven different disciplines in MMA but for boxing, I’m just training for boxing. And I need to train more with my footwork, the position of my hands. But I’ve been training for boxing for many, many years, so it’s something I’m comfortable doing. Every single fight you have different things you train for. Every fight is different. For this fight, I’m training to fight a boxer.”
On the motivation behind the fight
“I don’t need the money anymore. People think the money is important, but it’s not. Of course, I’m going to make money from this fight because It’s my job. Don’t do something just for the money. Work because you have a passion. That’s what I’ve done and why I’ve been successful all my life.”
On being the betting favorite against Paul
“There’s a lot of people who are saying Jake is no good, he’s not as good a striker. But to me the fight is a fight and I’m training hard to win this fight. I’m not looking at this as an easy fight for me. Every single fight is dangerous once you step through the ropes.”
On whether or not a loss will hurt his legacy
“I’m not going to lose. Nothing will affect my legacy. I’ve worked hard for many years to do something like this for my fans. This is one more fight – one more challenge for myself, but this won’t affect my legacy and career.”
On what he sees as the difference-maker
“The most important thing going into this fight is my experience. My experience is something that Jake doesn’t have. I love this challenge, that’s the secret to me and I go into this fight to prove my respect to the boxing community.”