“Bulldoguinho” will return to the 125-pound division after losing to Khalid Taha as a bantamweight in his Octagon debut in Australia, a bout that could be overturned to a no-contest after his opponent failed an in-competition drug test for a diuretic. Back to his original weight class, Silva is confident he has what it takes to claim the gold.
“I’m not a world champion yet, but I know how to get there,” Silva told MMA Fighting. “I saw it up close, I felt it when I was there with Henry against Demetrious Johnson, and I will become champion. Flyweight is my division and I feel confident training with these guys. I’m the next champ.”
Silva says he was offered a fight with Ray Borg for February, but had to turn it down since he was still recovering from a knee injury. “Bulldoguinho” was hoping to face Borg at UFC Brasilia on March 14 instead, but Borg is now booked against Rogerio Bontorin in Rio Rancho, NM, on Feb. 15.
“I’m in the UFC to fight the best,” Silva said. “That’s the only way. Top 10 fighters will notice me. There are not many fighters in our division, so I’m here to make some noise.”
A fight with Borg would be the perfect opportunity to jump right in the mix of the flyweight world, but the TUF Brazil 4 alum looks back at the lessons learned against Taha as to why he turned down the offer.
“There was a lot at stake in my debut,” Silva said. “Every single detail makes the difference at this level. I got injured three weeks out and only started walking again 10 days before the fight. I couldn’t say no to that fight, but I learned many lessons from it.”