Rewatched Silva/Sonnen UFC 117


Orange Belt
Mar 20, 2010
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Just rewatched the first Silva/Sonnen fight and found myself recording notes. Not sure why, but I figure I will share.

First: The resounding thoughts - Silva is incredibly resilient, Sonnen's gastank is deep, and Sonnen's wrestling is top-notch.

So, from my scratchings:

We tend to forget but Sonnen's initial success, right away in the first round, was via a strike. Truly, Sonnen owned Silva as far as striking goes in this fight.

As I watched, it occurred to me why Sonnen's fights entertain while some GSP fights do not despite similarity. Sonnen is so so active. I am not saying that he throws deathbombs but he is constantly throwing something.

I honestly think the first four rounds could have been scored 10-8 in favor of Sonnen.

During the 2nd round, Sonnen kept smacking Silva's ears without response. This is amazing. Not for Sonnen's effort. But for Silva's tolerance. Silva truly proved himself a machine during this fight. Most of Sonnen's strikes were far from devastating. But Silva's durability was, nonetheless, monumental.

During the 2nd and 3rd rounds, I discovered that Sonnen's biggest weakness was his ineffective use of elbows. In fact, I think Silva may have done more damage with his from the bottom. Sonnen is going to need to put some hate behind those elbows should he hope to have any chance against JBJ.

The first, I don't know, 40 seconds or so of the 4th round were great. Like MMA Hall of Fame worthy. That was good, competitive stuff.

And then, in the same round, the most amazing moment of the night occurred (aside, of course, from the submission). Sonnen completed one of the most sick takedowns I have ever seen. It was like a double-legged from the bottom. So, a sweep slash Greco takedown all-in-one. Such an unappreciated moment of the fight.

As the fight continued, I was most impressed by how effective a technique the buttefly guard is when executed by a master like Silva.

And then, let's not forget, the 5th round started with Sonnen rocking Silva. Via striking. I am so impressed with Sonnen's ability to sort of discretely land effective shots. On the feet, and via wrestling, Sonnen clearly won. He just didn't win the fight. It is what it is.

Such a classic bout.
It really is a classic bout, seeing as how it scared me for a bit.
Silva triangled the roid-head, don't have to watch again...
Other than the one punch in the first round which was the only time he rocked Silva, I don't see how people say Chael won standing
Great point about the striking in the first round, people do tend to forget that. Sonnen's not a great striker by any stretch, but for whatever reason, he's had more success than anyone against Silva, and Silva always looks uncomfortable and out of control when throwing with him. Even in the fourth round of this fight, and the second of the second fight, Silva looked good on the feet but not ANDERSON SILVA good. Another thing I noticed recently rewatching that fight is how close Silva gets to finishing it in the 4th. At the end of his big flurry in the 4th, right before Sonnen shoots for a takedown, Silva throws that same rising elbow that he destroyed Tony Fryklund with. He misses by about an inch, but if that, or a couple other things had landed, he could have won it right there, by TKO in the 4th.
Silva triangled the roid-head, don't have to watch again...

Totally agree. I watched the sub again just to see Silva win but the cheater got what he deserved.

"Sonnen's gastank is deep"

Yep it is almost like he was taking some banned substance that gave him a physical advantage.
Fights like that one are what convert your casual viewer into a die-hard.
Is somebody going to post a thread every time they pop in an old UFC dvd?
Man, so many haters replying to my post.

I am trying to be objective.

There is so much uncertainty when it comes to performance enhancers that I don't even factor them anymore. I mean, can anyone name a fighter they are sure is clean. Seriously, SURE?

Don't answer that. I don't want to digress.

The most resounding thing about this fight, to me, is Silva's resiliency. He took alot of punishment. And just continued on.

And the one thing most overlooked about this fight is Sonnen's sick takedown from the bottom in the fourth round. Jut masterful wrestling.

Please let this discussion focus on the fight, and not the semantics.
See my signature as to how I feel about this discussion
See my signature as to how I feel about this fight.

Well thankfully for WhiskeyBoarder he wasn't harping about how Sonnen almost won, he actually gave a good, objective breakdown of the fight and gave both men credit (oh the horror). Did any of you even read his post or did you just look at the thread title and dive immediately into 'grrrrrrrr hater' mode?
Sonnen tested higher than Overeem with a 16:1 Testosterone ratio before the fight. Silva came in with an injured rib. Than was forced to give up by getting caught. He won the battle but lost the war.
Don't know if I'd score all the first 4 10-8 rounds, there was definitely some layin and prayin but overall a pretty good breakdown.
Yes, classic fight. I remember watching it live at the bar and going crazy during the finish.