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Bruno Silva wants another ‘fantastic’ dance with Bruce Buffer after UFC Vegas 40 win

Bruno Silva finished Wellington Turman in the opening round to score his first UFC victory.
Zuffa LLC

Bruno Silva is not overlooking his UFC Vegas 40 opponent Andrew Sanchez by any means, but can’t wait to once again celebrate his victory alongside UFC announcer Bruce Buffer.

“Blindado” admits he was having a bit of octagon jitters going into his promotional debut in June even though he didn’t feel extra “pressure” when he fought — and beat — fellow Brazilian middleweight Wellington Turman via first-round knockout. With that out of the way, he vows to perform even better.

“Nothing there was new to me since I had fought in Russia before, I’d lived all that before,” Silva said in an interview with MMA Fighting. “The only thing different was the name of the promotion. [But] it was a dream come true to me, being in the world’s biggest promotion, dreaming with that moment for 12 years, with Bruce Buffer calling my name, that emotion… That affected me. That, and being sidelined for two years.”

Silva, a former M-1 middleweight champion who was forced to wait a couple of years before making his UFC debut due to a USADA drug test failure, said “my head was back in place two minutes into the fight and I knocked Turman out.”

On cloud nine with his first UFC victory under his belt, Silva couldn’t help but dance all over the octagon with his teammates. That contagious celebration didn’t stop until moments before Buffer announced the official result, having Buffer join him for a few moments of joy.

“Dude, that was fantastic,” Silva said of dancing with Buffer in his post-fight celebration. “I hope to dance more with him there.”

“I hadn’t fought in two years, there was a lot of feelings of happiness and emotions that affected me in the Turman fight, but there’s nothing new anymore,” he continued. “I’ve lived all that, I’ve enjoyed that moment, so my head is focused and I’m ready to turn the switch off on another one in there.”

Silva revealed he almost had his second UFC in July as a short-notice replacement, but the quick turnaround didn’t come to fruition after all. Open to another bout at UFC’s final card of the year on Dec. 18 to become “employee of the year” in 2021, “Blindado” focuses solely on beating Sanchez for now.

“He moves a lot, has good takedowns, but he’s not lethal,” Silva said. “He’s not a specialist in any area, like a knockout artist, a submission ace, a smothering wrestler… He knows everything but isn’t good or dangerous in anything. A fight is a fight and this is just theory and what you can see, of course, but I’m quite confident in my work.

“We can’t promise anything in a fight, but I’ll do everything I can to knock him out. One thing I never promise is which round [I’ll win] because I never worry about rounds. I don’t know how to score points. I don’t fight to score points, I fight for the finish. He’ll either end me or I’ll end him. I don’t like to go there and be like, oh, I’ll win this round and that round. F*ck this scoring points sh*t. I don’t work as a math teacher. I just want the right moment. I see his performance dropping in the second round, and I became champion in Russian fighting four rounds.”

Silva is 5-0 since 2017 with five knockouts, including stoppages over Alexander Shlemenko and Artem Frolov in Russia, and hopes to make a statement at UFC Vegas 40 on his way up to the 185-pound championship.

“I like to work hard and earn things,” Silva said. “If I get to the belt with five wins, great. If I get there with 10 fights, also great. I will get to the belt by working hard, but also enjoying the process. You gain so much experience when you fight so many different guys and face different fighting styles, you build your name in the promotion. I want to do that in the UFC, to have at least five wins before I get to the belt. I want [to win the belt] by 2023, tops.”