Chris Weidman likely would’ve retired with Bruno Silva loss: ‘I was going to put my gloves down’

Chris Weidman didn’t tell anyone that retirement was on his mind ahead of his fight with Bruno Silva at UFC Atlantic City.

Despite previously stating that his ability to get through a training camp without any serious injuries or severe pain would determine his future, the former UFC middleweight champion admits that wasn’t actually the case. Instead, Weidman confessed on The MMA Hour that his performance against Silva ultimately decided whether he would continue fighting or not.

“I probably would have retired if I didn’t perform out there,” Weidman said. “If [Silva] came at me and beat the crap out of me, I think I was going to put my gloves down. I didn’t really even tell my wife or anybody that, but in the back of my head, I was [ready to retire].”

Looking back at his camp, Weidman couldn’t have imagined a better lead-up to get ready for a fight. Unlike his initial return from a broken leg this past August, Weidman felt better than ever this time around, but that didn’t mean it would all translate into the fight.

That’s why Weidman kept thoughts about retirement to himself. He knew the people around him all saw how much he improved between fights, but the outcome still mattered most.

“All my training partners, my coaches, everybody, they think I’m better than ever,” Weidman said. “They can’t believe how good I am. They think I’ve become one of the best guys in the world again, but in my head, I’m like, I’ve done everything already and I know my potential. I know what they see. I know I could be in there with anybody.

“But if I’m not able to put it together in the UFC, in the cage in front of everybody, I’m not going to do it anymore. So if I didn’t perform well, I think I was done.”

Once the fight began and Weidman found success in all facets of his game, his demeanor shifted rather dramatically.

He outstruck Silva on the feet in nearly every exchange. He also threw kicks with bad intention, which is something he struggled to do in his first fight back against Brad Tavares.

Even with a somewhat disappointing finish, in which eye pokes effectively ended Silva’s night rather than strikes, Weidman knew he had plenty left to give.

“I told myself I wasn’t going to retire,” Weidman said. “My body felt so good all training camp.

“I felt so good, unless I couldn’t perform in there, then I don’t think I should be done.”

Now that he’s determined to fight again, Weidman isn’t necessarily rushing back, but he’s also not opposed to building on the momentum from his recent win.

He’s taking a much-needed vacation with his family right now, but the 39-year-old hinted at his interest in potentially returning when UFC 302 lands in New Jersey on June 1.

“We’ll see what happens,” Weidman said. “I’m going to take a week off. I’m going to get back into the gym. I came out healthy. I’ll get back into training and try to get better and we’ll see what’s out there. I know there’s another Jersey fight in June.

“I’ll tell you what, the love that I got from that crowd — I know everybody on Twitter hates me right now, but if you were in the arena that night, you loved me. It was awesome in there. The crowd was really cool. I think it was a great experience for everybody in there. It was a fun time. So that northeast love and things worked out for me, especially in Atlantic City, and 100 percent of the time in New Jersey.”

Source link

You May Also Like