Luminaries from the UFC world have started taking notice of Anderson Silva‘s next fight. According to a recent press release, that list includes the likes of Joe Rogan, Georges St-Pierre, Chuck Liddell, and Chael Sonnen. All four stars from the MMA world have shared their reactions to the upcoming crossover boxing battle between former UFC superstar Silva and boxing star Julio Cesar Chavez Jr, and all four seem excited about it.
Former UFC champ Chuck Liddell said, “It’s tough to cross over from MMA or even kickboxing to boxing because of the differences in stance, distance, and timing, but if anyone can do it, Anderson Silva can! I’ll pay to watch this fight.”
Chavez Jr. vs. Silva will be shown live on June 19 via cable, satellite, and digital pay-per-view, starting at 9 p.m. ET.
The price of the PPV is set at $39.99.
Integrated Sports Media and Joe Hand Promotions will distribute the card throughout North America via DirecTV, iN Demand, Vubiquity, DISH, SaskTel, Rogers, Shaw PPV and via the FITE.TV website and app in the United States, Canada, and select markets worldwide.
Rogan: ‘He Is a Dangerous Man’
Rogan told Russell Peters in a recent episode of “The Joe Rogan Experience” about Silva’s opponent, “He might not be as respected as some, but Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. is still a f****** beast. You cannot sleep on that guy. He is a dangerous man.”
Chavez Jr. is the son of Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. The latter is one of the most popular and decorated fighters in boxing history. While Chavez Jr. hasn’t enjoyed the same kind of Hall of Fame boxing career his father did, the “Son of a Legend” did manage to win a world title in boxing’s 160-pound weight class.
So Rogan is correct in saying Chavez Jr. will be a tall task for Silva.
Chavez Jr. is 52-5-1 with 34 KOs. He’s 35, and he’ll carry way more experience into the ring than his 46-year-old opponent will despite being so much younger.
St-Pierre: ‘I Wish Anderson Good Luck’
Both Silva and GSP are among the best and biggest UFC superstars ever. The only difference for them as far as boxing goes is that Silva was released from his UFC contract and St-Pierre is still technically a UFC fighter.
St-Pierre was hoping for his own boxing match against Oscar De La Hoya, but UFC president Dana White reportedly nixed the idea.
Still, GSP is supportive of Silva’s entry into the boxing world, so maybe “Rush” will find his own way over there sometime soon.
St-Pierre said, “I wish Anderson good luck because he is the one who is stepping into Chavez Junior’s world. Let’s hope they enjoy their fight, and that the boxing fans embrace this event. And of course that no one gets hurt.”
Sonnen Compares Fight to Mayweather vs. McGregor
Sonnen, who lost to Silva twice when both were UFC stars, offered his take on the fight via YouTube.
Sonnen said, “This is a very different Anderson because he used to box and even if it was Muay Thai, even if it was standup fights…he actually got in the ring and did this.”
So Sonnen believes Silva will have a much better chance at beating Chavez Jr. than Conor McGregor did when he fought Floyd Mayweather in 2017.
He said, “It’s a significant difference than say what Conor McGregor did when he fought Floyd. It’s significantly different in that Conor had never done it before. He’d done something close…he had sparred a little bit. Anderson did all of that but also stepped in there and competed.”
Indeed, Silva is 1-1 as a pro boxer according to BoxRec, so he at least has some experience in the sport. McGregor was 0-0 when he fought Mayweather, and he left the ring 0-1.
Moreover, Sonnen said he’s happy that Silva is retiring from MMA. He said, “…I’m happy to hear he’s done with MMA. I’m happy to hear that if he’s going to elect to go into this sport he is showing that sport the respect that it needs and that it requires to be successful which is full commitment and immersion.”
Chavez Jr. vs. Silva is set for June 19 at 9 p.m. ET.
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