Anderson Silva Knocks Out Tito Ortiz in First Round

Anderson Silva has knocked out a fellow MMA legend…

The 46-year-old Brazilian mixed martial-artist-turned-boxer stopped fellow MMA legend Tito Ortiz via knockout at 1:21 of the first round on Saturday night in Hollywood, Florida.

Anderson Silva

Ortiz had Silva trapped in the corner, throwing punches. But Silva ducked an Ortiz shot and landed a huge counter right hook. Silva followed up with a left as Ortiz slumped against the corner to put him down for good. Ortiz appeared to be completely unconscious.

Silva defeated former world champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. via split decision on June 19 in Guadalajara, Mexico. That was Silva’s first pro boxing match in 16 years.

The Silva-Ortiz bout — Ortiz’s pro boxing debut — took place on the undercard of the Evander HolyfieldVitor Belfort boxing match under the Triller Fight Club banner at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino.

“I trained hard to show my respect for boxing,” Silva said in his post-fight interview. “I continue to work every day to prove my respect for the martial arts and for Wing Chun  and for Bruce Lee.

“The grandmaster Bruce Lee said, ‘Be water, my friend.’ That’s what I do today.”

Both Silva and Ortiz are 46 years old. The bout was contracted for eight, two-minute rounds and at 195 pounds. Ortiz weighed five pounds over that catchweight limit on Friday, coming in at 200 pounds.

Silva is the former longtime UFCmiddleweight champion and considered one of the greatest MMA fighters of all time. He holds the longest winning streak in UFC history (16) and has the most knockouts ever in UFC title fights at seven. Silva asked for and was granted his release from the UFC in November. “The Spider” had just one win in his past nine UFC fights. Silva has said he is effectively retired now from MMA.

Ortiz, meanwhile, is one of the best UFC light heavyweight champions of all time. “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy” had five successful UFC 205-pound title defenses, the second-highest total in division history behind only all-time great Jon Jones. Ortiz, a California native, is also considered one of the biggest financial draws for the UFC over the years, with notable rivalries against Chuck Liddell and Ken Shamrock.

Ortiz most recently fought in December 2019, an MMA bout against former WWE champion Alberto Del Rio under the Combate Americas banner. Ortiz won that bout via first-round submission.

Anderson Silva Defeats Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. by Split Decision

Anderson Silva has taken down a boxing champion…

The 46-year-old Brazilian mixed martial artist, a former UFC middleweight champion who made a career out of doing the impossible, defeated Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. via split decision (75-77, 77-75, 77-75) in a shockingly impressive boxing performance on Saturday night at Jalisco Stadium in Guadalajara, Mexico.

Anderson Silva

A heavy underdog, Silva hadn’t competed in boxing since 2005 and had just two pro boxing matches coming in. Chavez Jr., the son and namesake of Mexico’s most popular boxing superstar, is a former WBC middleweight champion.

“I love fighting,” Silva said in his postfight interview. “Boxing was my dream for many years. I needed to show my respect for boxing. I need to come here and do my best.”

The bout was contested at 182 pounds with eight three-minute rounds. Chavez Jr. missed weight by 2.4 pounds Friday, forfeiting $100,000 of his purse to Silva. The event was dubbed “Tribute to the Kings” with the headliner pitting Chavez Sr. against Hector Camacho Jr., the son of his biggest rival, in an exhibition boxing match.

Silva’s fight against Chavez Jr. started slow, but Silva started to gain confidence in the third round and looked like the vintage version of the MMA all-time great. He started dropping his hands and taunting Chavez Jr. in the third round, a stunning display, considering the enormous gap in boxing experience. Silva carried that confidence and started hurting Chavez Jr. in the fourth round with combinations and a long, straight left. Silva, a southpaw, showed off a solid, snapping jab as well.

Chavez Jr. had some moments with body shots and left hooks, but never really hurt Silva. In the seventh, Silva opened up a cut near Chavez Jr.’s right eye, which started bleeding worse in the eighth round.

“I think it could have been a draw,” Chavez Jr. said. “I failed to throw more punches. He didn’t do much damage. There were a few rounds that went back and forth.”

Silva outlanded Chavez Jr. 99-53 in total punches and 60-41 in power punches, per CompuBox. Afterward, Canelo Alvarez, the world’s best pound-for-pound boxer, came up to Silva and gave him a “salute,” Silva said.

“I don’t believe it,” Silva said. “Canelo come talk to me. I’m so happy.”

Silva has been talking about doing a boxing match for a decade or so, but had been under contract with the UFC. Silva always said a boxing bout with Roy Jones Jr. was a dream and goal of his. Maybe now it can happen at both of their advanced ages.

Silva (2-1) is one of the greatest champions in MMA history. The Brazil native held the UFC middleweight title for seven years, the longest reign in promotion history. “The Spider” owns the longest winning streak in UFC history (16) and the most finishes in UFC title fights (nine). Silva asked for his release from the UFC last November, and it was granted. He has just one MMA victory since 2012.

Chavez Jr. (52-6-1) has lost four of his past six fights. He is indefinitely suspended by the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) and the Arizona Boxing & MMA Commission for refusing to take a drug test before a fight with Danny Jacobs in 2019.

Chavez Jr., 35, has never quite lived up to the lofty family expectations, though he does own wins over Marco Antonio Rubio and Andy Lee. He has dropped high-profile bouts to Canelo Alvarez and Jacobs.