UFC 101: Declaration is set to air live from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania this coming weekend. While the card may not fall under the same category as UFC 100, which was described as a card for the ages, a certain fight may just turn out to make the cut. Anderson Silva versus Forrest Griffin is a fight that has “All-Time Great” written all over it.
Forrest Griffin is the former UFC light heavyweight champion of the world, and looks to get back on track for the title with a victory over one of the best pound for pound fighters on the planet. Griffin has always been known for his all out brawl mentality, leading to his fights being some of the most exciting fights the sport has to offer.
Anderson Silva, however, cannot be described as exciting when referring back to his previous two fights, which were criticized heavily by the mixed martial arts community. Forrest Griffin will certainly be the test that “The Spider” seems to need, as Silva once again exits his 185 pound kingdom for the uncertainties of the 205 pound division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
The following segments will break the fight down into different categories, displaying the advantages and disadvantages held by Anderson Silva and Forrest Griffin as they enter their light heavyweight showdown at UFC 101.
Anderson Silva has created a legacy through his stellar striking, leading to several rather devastating knockouts. Silva is accurate, and he is powerful. His muy-thai is phenomenal, and if he catches you in the clinch, forget about finishing the round.
However, while Forrest Griffin will never boast knockout power or precision striking, his stand-up game remains a threat to everyone he faces.
Against Quinton Jackson, Griffin was able to use leg kicks effectively to absolutely destroy the lower limbs of his opponent. While Silva will not be as easy a target for leg kicks as Jackson, Griffin’s kicks will allow him to keep distance from his opponent, along with possibly making Silva hesitant to move in.
Silva may bring a better striking skill set into this match, but the brawling nature of Forrest Griffin, along with a solid game plan in the stand up (leg kicks, etc.) may be enough for him to win the striking battle. However, each fighter brings their own weapons in this area, and it is going to be an interesting, and close, fight on the feet.
Both Griffin and Silva have ground games that are virtually unknown to the majority of the mixed martial arts community, mainly due to the fact that neither prefers to use their Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, but rather stand and strike. On August 8, it is unlikely that either will greatly utilize his jiu-jitsu background.
With both men having underrated ground game, it is hard to give an advantage, especially when it comes to submissions. However, strength may prove a factor if the men hit the mat.
It remains no secret that Forrest Griffin is big, even for a light heavyweight. While Silva is strong himself, Griffin’s size and strength will be his greatest advantage in either neutralizing any advantage Silva has on the ground, or simply winning the fight on the floor.
With one another’s ground game so similar in stature, however, at this point the ground segment of this fight would likely prove a draw.
Forrest Griffin boasts several advantages when entering Saturday’s fight, and almost none are physical, as the two fighters are similar in size. Griffin’s biggest advantage is his heart. For the millions who watched his battle against Stephen Bonnar on “The Ultimate Fighter”, Griffin displayed how far he is willing to go to win a fight. There is zero quit in this man.
Anderson Silva, however, seems to have had anything but heart in his past couple of fights. His lackluster performances have displayed little of his will to win, and have left the fans upset. Whether or not Griffin can beat “The Spider”, Silva will be tested, and his heart will be on display.
In a contest of heart, no one is going to beat Forrest Griffin. Along with his skill set, Griffin’s “never say die” attitude will allow the former champion to keep this fight going.
The Grand Finale:
Forrest Griffin has spent his time in the UFC as a fan favorite, and also as an underdog in several of his fights. However, that has not stopped him before, and it will not stop him now. With undying heart, vicious kicks, and a stellar game plan, Forrest Griffin takes the fight all fifteen minutes, defeating Anderson Silva via Unanimous Decision.