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UFC light heavyweight Thiago Silva (14-2 MMA, 5-2 UFC) is back in the gym and wants to fight this summer.

The Brazilian slugger today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that he's recovered from a serious back injury and returned to his flagship gym at American Top Team in Coconut Creek, Fla.

Silva said he had three herniated discs in his back three weeks prior to his most recent fight against Rashad Evans at UFC 108 and was nearly bedridden until the Jan. 2 main event.

Silva had the audience on the edge of its seat when he nearly knocked Evans out in the third round of the bout, but he eventually fell short on the judges' scorecards. Afterward, he went into an intense physical therapy regimen and stayed out of the gym.

In that time, he's learned a painful lesson: He can't take any more fights when he's hurt.

"When I needed the extra stamina, the extra gas, I didn't have (it) to finish the fight," Silva said through his translator and manager Fabiano Silva. "It's not a regret, but it was a big thing to learn."

In the weeks leading up to the event, which went down in history as one of the most injury-plagued fight cards in UFC history, Silva denied reports that he was fighting hurt. Privately, though, he admitted he was in bad shape.

In recovery, he worked to strengthen his hips and lower-back muscles, which had atrophied in his time off. He said the pain in the two areas made him unable to stop Evans' takedowns during the fight.

"I had to go through a lot of pain and suffering," Silva said of his physical therapy. "But thank god, everything works fine, and I just got cleared by the doctor last week. I'm back now."

Starting July 3, the date of the UFC's blockbuster summer card, UFC 116 with UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar vs. interim title-holder Shane Carwin, he's ready to fight.

"There’s a few names out there that are available because pretty much everybody is signed for fights," Silva said. "There are a few names now, but we can't say yet.

"We've already asked for two names from the UFC, so we're waiting to see how it's going to come out. But I'm only going to take a tough fight; no easy way. I want the top [fighters]."

One light heavyweight burning up the 205-pound ranks is Jon Jones. The up-and-comer decimated Brandon Vera eight days ago on March 21 and is poised for a top-tier opponent. UFC president Dana White said Jones is one year away from a title shot, but an opponent such as Silva—one of the few who's currently un-booked—appears to be a good fit in the interim.

Silva, however, disagrees.

"I think [Jones] is a wonderful fighter; he's doing a good job, putting on a good show," Silva said. "But I think he has to prove himself more to get the right to fight me. He’s doing fine, but he has to take a few more steps. I [want to] climb fast to the title shot, so I want people with the high ranking right now."

And Silva is prepared to wait for those fights.

"Money's not an issue right now, so I’m ready to wait to get the fight I want so I can work back to the top," he said. "A fight's a fight; you don't want to take risks.

"You want to beat the best so you can be the best.” Somewhere down the road, he wants to rematch Evans and light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida, who defeated him by knockout this in a No. 1 contender's bout in January 2009 at UFC 94.

"Of course I want those fights because I think I have all the tools to beat those guys," Silva said. "Not taking anything from them. They are top level athletes, but I believe I can beat those guys."

Now, it's a matter of waiting to find out the name of the first opponent to welcome him back to the octagon.

For complete coverage of UFC 116, check out the UFC Events section of MMAjunkie.com.
Link to the article here
 

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kind of takes some lustre off Rashads win (was there any to begin with??) if this is true.

i heard he almost pulled out so i think this just may be true.

better hope Page comes down sick, kid ;)
 

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Forum "Superhero"
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man im surprised he took that fight let alone walked out of the cage. i can say that man is tough as h**l-look forward to seeing him fight evey time.
 

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He didn't look good in the Rashad fight, in fact he was completely outclassed until he baited Rashad in the third round. Hope he is healed and is back to being himself next fight.
 

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Thats too bad. He probably would have KOed Rashad in the third round if he was in better shape....


.....Rematch!!!!???? After Page KO's Rashad. :thumb02:
 

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I dunno about this one. I've known people with herniated discs and they can barely move. Either he was shot up with so many painkillers or he's exaggerating the injury imo. Tough or not the people I've seen can't even get off a couch let alone fight a former world champion and it isnt like Thiago was wincing in pain or unusually hunched over. Call me a skeptic but I'm calling bullshit on this one, getting slammed on your back with 3 herniated discs would be unbearable pain and he was put on his back multiple times. Why is this coming out almost 3 months after the fight anyway.
 

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He may have had a injury with his back, but it was no where to this extent. He would hardly be able to get back up after one of those Rashad takedowns.


"Money's not an issue right now, so I’m ready to wait to get the fight I want so I can work back to the top," he said. "A fight's a fight; you don't want to take risks
How come you take a fight in this condition and risk falling down the ladder, and yet money is not a issue? if its not a issue.... DONT FIGHT.
 

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How come you take a fight in this condition and risk falling down the ladder, and yet money is not a issue? if its not a issue.... DONT FIGHT.
Agreed. I think he said that purely to impress his fans because when applied to the Rashad fight, it makes no sense(unless I'm missing something.)
 

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It's funny because he's had two losses in three fights, and he's saying Jon Jones doesn't deserve to fight him? Pretty weak, and the fact that he comes out with this like a couple months after the fight, doesn't exactly scream credibility. He needs to take whatever the UFC gives him and be happy.
 

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I dunno about this one. I've known people with herniated discs and they can barely move. Either he was shot up with so many painkillers or he's exaggerating the injury imo. Tough or not the people I've seen can't even get off a couch let alone fight a former world champion and it isnt like Thiago was wincing in pain or unusually hunched over. Call me a skeptic but I'm calling bullshit on this one, getting slammed on your back with 3 herniated discs would be unbearable pain and he was put on his back multiple times. Why is this coming out almost 3 months after the fight anyway.
This.

Also, don't medics and the lot check a fighter before they enter the cage? If so, then I doubt the docs would have let him fight with 3 ******* herniated discs in his back. That shit can take almost a year to rehab, and Silva's taken 3 months???? Talk about hyperbole.
 

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The American Psycho
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I dunno about this one. I've known people with herniated discs and they can barely move. Either he was shot up with so many painkillers or he's exaggerating the injury imo. Tough or not the people I've seen can't even get off a couch let alone fight a former world champion and it isnt like Thiago was wincing in pain or unusually hunched over. Call me a skeptic but I'm calling bullshit on this one, getting slammed on your back with 3 herniated discs would be unbearable pain and he was put on his back multiple times. Why is this coming out almost 3 months after the fight anyway.
Agreed! Look what happened to Matt Serra when he was suffering from a herniated disc. He admitted that he had to have his brother help him put on his shoes because the pain was so bad. There is no way Thiago would have been able to move let alone fight with a herniated disc!
 

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Hope he's healed up when he begins gatekeeping.
it's a bit early to give him gatekeeper status, Machida and Evans are elite LHW's (although you could make an argument that Evans perhaps isn't elite). However, Bones Jones wouldn't be a step down in competition for Thiago, it would be a good scrap.
 

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Well tough titty Thiago. When you lose 2 out of 3 you take a step down. Bones is the up and comer. You have to defend your spot before you can start working your way back up. Give us a reason again.
 

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I dunno about this one. I've known people with herniated discs and they can barely move. Either he was shot up with so many painkillers or he's exaggerating the injury imo. Tough or not the people I've seen can't even get off a couch let alone fight a former world champion and it isnt like Thiago was wincing in pain or unusually hunched over. Call me a skeptic but I'm calling bullshit on this one, getting slammed on your back with 3 herniated discs would be unbearable pain and he was put on his back multiple times. Why is this coming out almost 3 months after the fight anyway.
I had ONE herniated disc and I couldn't walk right. I couldn't even bend enough to put on my own socks, seriously and walking in of itself has to be done like you're walking on glass, as to not aggravate the sciatic nerve. "True" (lumbar) herniated discs tend to impinge on the sciatic nerve. Nerve pain isn't something you can ignore. It's not like muscle strains or a really sore muscle, or anything you can deal. A sharp nerve pain will paralyze your movement in that moment it's so intense. It's like getting stabbed in the lower back, then dragging the knife down your hamstrings. I'm also a bit skeptical about this one.

Tito Ortiz just said the exact same thing (2-3 herniated discs) like 2 weeks ago.
 

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Well tough titty Thiago. When you lose 2 out of 3 you take a step down. Bones is the up and comer. You have to defend your spot before you can start working your way back up. Give us a reason again.
Yea he has lost 2 out of 3. But people forget that his best win BY FAR is Keith Jardine.

He hasn't beat anyone yet and doesn't even have that many decent wins.

Going by facts and record Thiago Silva is below JJ not above him.
 
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