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Weidman defends UFC belt when Silva breaks leg

UFC 168: Weidman v Silva 2
LAS VEGAS (AP) -- Chris Weidman accepted his UFC middleweight title belt with a grimace and a furtive look over his shoulder. Anderson Silva writhed and screamed on the canvas behind him, his left leg grotesquely broken by a kick to Weidman's knee.

The champ couldn't celebrate after the UFC's year-end show ended with a stark reminder of the brutality at the core of this flashy, fast-growing sport.

Weidman defended his title when Silva broke his shin on a kick to Weidman's knee in the second round Saturday night, ending UFC 168 with a horrific injury.

While Weidman (11-0) awkwardly acknowledged his victory, the MGM Grand Garden crowd watched with reverence and horror as medical personnel tended to Silva (33-6), whose shin bent to a 90-degree angle after Weidman blocked his kick 1:16 into the round.

"There's no real excitement in a fight finishing like that, because you never want to see anyone get hurt like that," Weidman said after his second straight win over the long-reigning champion.

Weidman, who earned his belt with an upset victory in July, also dominated the first round of the rematch, pinning Silva to the mat and punishing him with blows. In the second, Weidman used his knee to stop Silva's kick with perfect mixed martial arts technique, never anticipating the result.

"I did work on checking kicks," Weidman said. "I figured if I (caught) him on my knee, it could really hurt him. Crazy how this happened."

Ronda Rousey also retained her bantamweight title on arguably the UFC's most anticipated show of the year, submitting Miesha Tate with a third-round arm bar. Rousey then walked away from her bitter rival's offer of a post-fight handshake, earning ferocious boos from the Vegas fight crowd.

But Rousey's questionable sportsmanship was dwarfed by the unquestionably awful finish to the main event.

Although the injury happened too quickly to be seen by most naked eyes in Las Vegas, the sound of Silva's cracking shin could be heard at cageside. Thousands of fans cringed and moaned when the replay was shown on the arena's big screens.

"I knew coming into the fight that what he could hurt me most with was the leg kicks," Weidman said. "We trained checking the kick a lot. The idea is to pull your leg and for their shin to land at the knee. That's exactly what I did, and I felt his leg go right away."

Referee Herb Dean waved off the fight when Silva fell back, clutching his leg with both hands. Silva left the octagon strapped to a stretcher with a brace on his leg, screaming in pain.

With his belt back around his waist, Weidman paid tribute to the injured ex-champion.

"He's still known as the greatest fighter of all time," Weidman said.

Silva's nearly seven-year reign atop the middleweight division ended nearly six months ago when Weidman stopped the preening, posturing champion with a left hook at UFC 162.

With two straight wins, the former Hofstra wrestler has firmly ended Silva's reign. The injury in the rematch conceivably could end the 38-year-old Brazilian's MMA career.

The show was heavy on violent finishes. Heavyweight Travis Browne knocked out veteran Josh Barnett in the first round with a series of elbows to the head, earning the third straight early stoppage on the pay-per-view portion of the card.

Before the unsettling main event, Rousey (8-0) got the biggest test of her ascendant career.

Rousey had never seen the second round of an MMA fight, but Tate tested the champion with striking and tenacity. Although Rousey repeatedly tossed Tate (13-5) to the canvas and pounded on her, Rousey couldn't finish until getting her weary opponent into her patented arm bar - the submission move she has used to end each of her eight professional fights.

"I respect Miesha very much as a competitor," said Rousey, who feels Tate insulted her family. "But I can't respect a fighter who did what she did, and I cannot shake her hand because of it."

Tate landed plenty of strikes to Rousey's head, particularly during a thrilling first round in which she tested Rousey's chin. Rousey gradually wore down Tate and finally finished her, violently bending her elbow and forcing Tate to tap out.

"Going more than one round was a good experience," Rousey said. "I needed that experience in the octagon, and as my mom said, better to get it in a win than in a loss."

But when Tate attempted to shake her hand, Rousey slowly rose and walked away. The crowd booed vociferously when the replay of the snub was shown in slow motion, but Rousey didn't apologize.

Nearly two years ago, Rousey defeated Tate by first-round arm bar to claim Tate's Strikeforce title, cementing her meteoric rise from the U.S. Olympic judo team to the apex of MMA. Rousey and Tate have made no secret of their distaste since that bout, further stoked by their combative appearance as coaches on the most recent season of "The Ultimate Fighter," the UFC's competition reality show.

"In judo, I didn't know what a cheer was," Rousey said. "Cheers are what's new."

Join the discussion

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JR December 30 2013 at 10:28 AM

If there was anyobne who could ever come back it would be the greatest fighter of my era Anderson Silva .. But Why would he ? Anderson has nothing to prove and its time to let the next part of his life to take sahpe .. Possibly coaching ? We have followed the UFC from the start and i know our group we will do nothing but wish Andrson well

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Scott December 30 2013 at 2:42 AM

I just watched the Silva v Maia fight again. I had almost forgotten how disrespectful Silva has always been. It didn't start with his last embarrassing performance that got him knocked out, it has been ongoing for years. I don't know how we all forgot the chants of many of his opponents during his fights, and the boos when he would win. I guess if he was the greatest of all time...he is the second greatest now. Just lucky for him he didn't meet up with Weidman years ago, he might have just been remembered as an athletic clown. I hope he comes back.

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2 replies
rondcopeland Scott December 30 2013 at 4:06 AM

I agree, he thought know one could beat him. he was told at one time, if he abused someone else in a fight, then he would be kicked out of the ufc, i hope he comes back so weidmen can beat him again

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3 replies
irvineadj2 Scott December 30 2013 at 9:19 AM

you obviously have not watched the sport and or anderson's reign over the ufc. he has all the records.

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Monty and Karlee December 30 2013 at 9:12 PM

I have been watching the UFC fights since the first night, and I am pleased that the belt is back in the states. I do wish Silva the best.

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babb39 December 30 2013 at 3:11 PM

I had my right leg shattered when I got ran over by a car, I don't think I reacted as bady as Silva...I feel your pain dude...eeewwweee.

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joethecaregiver December 30 2013 at 8:12 AM

umm some retards here are saying he has bone cancer or did not drink milk ???? ummm the shin going against the knee====THE KNEE BLOCK WILL BREAK THE SHIN KICK THAT WAS THE PLAN=ur welcome

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Velocity105 December 30 2013 at 8:01 PM

Yep the man's done, he couldn't hold up against Weidman this time around. Now he has a broken leg and a 40th birthday around the corner. Did you save your money bro?

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redlegjnks December 30 2013 at 5:15 PM

Humm you got to think about it people! is this really as brutal and barbaric as you say. I think it is less so than the vidios of people hitting a old lady on the head with a TV during the black friday sales. What about the two "LADIES" that went into fist acuffs over new air jorden shoses?
Some say it is all about money and they a right the fighters are trained for it and they know what can happen.
Now is it barbaric to hit a old women in the head over a TV or maybe the right thing to is get in a fist fight over shoses. No way get it on! It is about the money.

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Rancid Gash December 30 2013 at 9:44 AM

I like Silva, but maybe it is time to retire. As in other sports, 38 is considered "old".

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sequestereddems December 30 2013 at 6:34 PM

They didnt even show it!

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Enrique Alvarez- December 30 2013 at 10:16 AM

In my opinion Anderson Silva is done...the second great brazilian fighter out in a few month...the other Junior Dos Santos...his injuries in the nose, ears and throat are too much for him ...Velazquez finished Dos Santos. For Silva the way that he light up his career for seven years, finished in a few minutes ..if you observe his body Silva has not strong legs, very thin...also 38 or 39 years old...the stronger fighter are in the twenties and early thirties....The clown attitude of Silva did not work with Weidman and his technique blocking legs kick with the knee get this results.

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