Anderson Silva Proves The GOAT Is Really A Spider

Screen Shot of Broadcast

Anderson Silva is proving that life starts after 40.

“The Spider” demolished former UFC light heavyweight champion Tito “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy” Ortiz in the first round of a boxing match last night.

Silva finished Ortiz via knockout at the 1:21 mark of the first round on Saturday night. The match was the co-main event of the Triller Fight Club series at the Hard Rock Casino in Hollywood, Florida.

“The Spider” Bests “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy”

After an already legendary mixed martial arts career, Silva made quick work of Ortiz in advancing his burgeoning boxing career.

Ironically, the victory comes after UFC President Dana White refused to allow Silva to fight again and encouraged other promoters to follow suit.

However, Silva is the rare MMA fighter to make a seamless transition to boxing with relatively no hiccups.

During the fight, in which Ortiz was perpetually in danger, Silva ducked Ortiz’s left hooks and landed a huge counter right hook. Eventually Silva followed up with a left, stunning Ortiz and slumping him in the corner. The shot dramatically put Ortiz down for good.

The Weight Of It All

Ortiz had initially complained that the contracted catch weight of 195 pounds, which Ortiz missed, would be a factor. Ortiz came in at 200 pounds and fought at 205 during his MMA career. His last MMA fight in 2019 was at a catch weight of 210 pounds for the Combate Americas promotion.

The fight was Ortiz’s first professional boxing match after a 22-year MMA career. However, Ortiz never fought Silva in mixed martial arts. The battle was a boxing version of a super match, but Silva’s limited experience in boxing proved too much.

The Spider GOAT

Silva has been on a roll in his sporadic boxing career. After his start as a professional boxer in 1998, Silva has been in and out of boxing. He began a year after his professional MMA debut in 1997, losing his professional boxing debut.

He then boxed again in 2005, almost a full year before his devastating UFC debut in 2006, where he KO’d Chris Leben in 0:49 of the first round. Silva won his second professional boxing match by second-round KO.

Recently, Silva defeated former world champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. by a split decision on June 19 in Guadalajara, Mexico. That was Silva’s first pro boxing match in 16 years after a Hall of Fame-worthy UFC career.

The former UFC middleweight champion holds the record for the longest title reign in UFC history at six years and seven months (2,457 days). The dominance began in 2006 and ended in 2013. Silva compiled a record of 16 consecutive victories during that span.

Since Conor McGregor fought Floyd Mayweather Jr. in 2017, many mixed martial arts fighters have transitioned to boxing.

Most recently, former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley took on Jake Paul in a boxing match. “The Chosen One” was bested by “The Problem Child” by a split decision loss but is committed to staying in the sport.

The main event of the Silva vs. Ortiz bout featured former UFC light heavyweight champion Vitor Belfort vs. Evander Holyfield. Holyfield is a former boxing Olympic gold medalist and multiple-time heavyweight world champion.

At 46 years old, Anderson Silva shows that the transition from MMA to boxing might start earlier than believed. Since he switch-hit sports throughout his career, the evolution was never a true restart, just a revisit to something he was always cultivating.

Rhett Butler is a Boxing Writer Association of America Journalist, Play-By-Play Commentator, Combat Sports Insider, and Former Mixed Martial Arts and Boxing Promoter. The New York City native honed his skills at various news outlets including but not limited to: TIME Magazine, Money Magazine, CNN's Wolf Blitzer Reports, and more. Rhett hosts the PRITTY Left Hook podcast, a polarizing combat sports insider's take featuring the world's biggest names.