ANDERSON SILVA NAMED TO UFC® HALL OF FAME CLASS OF 2023
Las Vegas – UFC® today announced that former UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva will be inducted into the 2023 Class of the UFC Hall of Fame as a Pioneer. The 2023 UFC Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, presented by Toyo Tires®, will take place during the 11th Annual UFC International Fight WeekÔ this summer in Las Vegas and will be streamed live on UFC FIGHT PASS®.
“Anderson Silva is one of the greatest athletes of all time,” UFC President Dana White said. “Anderson’s 16-fight winning streak in the UFC, 10 successful title defenses and almost seven years as middleweight champion were one of the most remarkable things we’ve ever seen in professional sports. He was an absolute artist inside the Octagon, and it will be an honor to induct him into the UFC Hall of Fame this summer.”
Silva will enter the UFC Hall of Fame as the 19th member of the Pioneer Era Wing. The Pioneers Era category includes athletes who turned professional before November 17, 2000 (when the unified rules of mixed martial arts were adopted), are a minimum age of 35, or who have been retired for one year or more.
A veteran of 46 fights during his 23-year professional MMA career, Silva compiled a record of 34-11, 1 NC (21-8, 1 NC UFC / PRIDE), notching victories over future UFC Hall of Famers Forrest Griffin, Stephan Bonnar, Dan Henderson and Rich Franklin. He also secured wins over former UFC light heavyweight champion and UFCÒ 12: JUDGEMENT DAY heavyweight tournament champion Vitor Belfort, former UFC welterweight champion Carlos Newton, former Strikeforce welterweight champion Nate Marquardt, former WEC middleweight champion Chris Leben, and former WEC heavyweight champion James Irvin.
Silva made his professional MMA debut in Brazil in 1997, winning his two matches as part of BFC 1. He would then compete across numerous MMA platforms over the next nine years, capturing middleweight titles in Shooto (2-0) and Cage Rage (4-0), while also fighting top ranked talent in PRIDE (4-1).
An international star, but virtually unknown to UFC’s fanbase, Anderson made his UFC debut against Chris Leben in the main event of UFC ULTIMATE FIGHT NIGHT 5 on June 28, 2006. Silva defeated the former WEC champion via first round knockout that earned him a title shot against UFC middleweight champion Rich Franklin.
UFCÒ 64: UNSTOPPABLE took place on October 14, 2006, at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. Franklin entered the bout on a seven-fight winning streak and was unbeaten inside the Octagon. Anderson took control of the fight early, defeating Franklin via KO in the first round. He repeated his victory over Rich a year later in Franklin’s hometown of Cincinnati.
Silva’s two wins over Franklin, sandwiched around stoppages of Travis Lutter and Marquardt, launched one of the most dominant title reigns in professional sports history. Anderson ruled the middleweight division for 2,457 days – nearly seven years – defeating a host of top contenders including Chael Sonnen (twice), Demian Maia, and Belfort in the process. He also competed outside of the middleweight division, moving up to light heavyweight and defeating future Hall of Famers Griffin and Bonnar, as well as James Irwin.
After setting a then-record number of successful title defenses (10) with his second victory over Sonnen in 2012, Silva lost the middleweight crown to Chris Weidman in the main event of UFCÒ 162: SILVA vs. WEIDMAN on July 6, 2013. Following his second consecutive loss to Weidman in the rematch at UFC 168, Anderson continued to provide fans with memorable moments inside the Octagon, returning from a serious leg injury suffered in the rematch to face top athletes such as Nick Diaz, future Hall of Famers Daniel Cormier and Michael Bisping, and former UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya before retiring in October 2020 after a loss to Uriah Hall.
Silva enters the UFC Hall of Fame with an impressive resume that includes:
- Longest winning streak in UFC history – 16
- Longest title reign in UFC history – 2,457 days
- Most wins in UFC middleweight history – 11
- Most knockdowns in UFC middleweight history – 13
- Tied for most knockouts in UFC middleweight history – 8
- Tied for second-most wins in UFC middleweight history – 14
- Second-most consecutive title defenses in UFC history – 10
- Second-most knockdowns in UFC history – 18
- Fourth-most title fight wins in UFC history – 11
- Tied for fourth-most knockouts in UFC history – 11
- Tied for fourth-most finishes in UFC history – 14
Outside the Octagon, Silva has been honored with numerous awards during his career, such as being acknowledged by World MMA Awards Fighter of the Year (2008), Sports Illustrated Fighter of the Year (2008), ESPN.com Knockout of the Year (2011), and Wrestling Observer Most Outstanding Fighter and MMA Most Valuable Fighter (2012).
A native of Sao Paulo, Brazil, Silva trained in multiple combat sports disciplines, beginning with jiu-jitsu, and expanding to taekwondo, capoeira, and muay thai during his teenage years. An accomplished lifelong martial arts practitioner, Anderson holds a 3rd degree black belt in jiu-jitsu and a 5th dan black belt in taekwondo. In addition to MMA, he has also competed in five professional boxing matches, securing a 3-2 record. Silva currently resides in Los Angeles, Calif., with his wife, Dayane, and five children.