"The fans are the ones that missed out," Silva said through manager Ed Soares after his workout on the casino floor of the MGM Grand. "That's unfortunate, but ... he missed his flight or whatever he's got going on. It's just unfortunate for the fans."
Dave Sholler, the UFC's vice president of public relations, told reporters earlier that Diaz would not be at workouts, because he didn't get on flights Tuesday afternoon or Wednesday morning from Sacramento. Sholler said Diaz was at the airport Tuesday, but "elected" not to fly out. He wasn't sure of Diaz's reasoning.
Silva was not offended that he showed up for the proceedings to promote their main event fight and Diaz did not.
"This is not disrespect," Silva said, adding that Diaz might have missed his flight the way Silva originally did on his way to Las Vegas this week.
Sholler said the UFC was confident Diaz would be in town by Wednesday afternoon. A penalty for his absence to the mandatory fan and media workout will be discussed by UFC president Dana White and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta, per Sholler.
Silva's workout was lengthy and entertaining. He went through boxing, kicking and grappling drills with coaches and multiple partners. It was quite the display and the fans seemed extremely appreciative. Silva himself was light on his feet, fast with his hands and didn't show any concerns over throwing kicks with his surgically repaired left leg.
The crowd-pleasing performance had nothing to with Diaz's absence, Silva said.
"No," he said. "I always put on a show like that, every time I do an open workout."
Silva is trying to come back after breaking that leg in gruesome fashion in December 2013 against Chris Weidman in the very same building where he worked out Wednesday. The former UFC middleweight champion, and perhaps the greatest champion in UFC history, said he was happy and excited to be returning.
"All my fights, I agree have been very important," Silva said. "At this moment in my life, this is the most important. After the fight, we'll see what comes up. But right now, this is the most important in my life."