“We’ve talked with the UFC, and we’ll see what they come up with,” said Soares when asked what’s in store for Silva when he returns.
If you’ve been following Silva’s social media postings, the change is merely a formal designation. The ex-UFC middleweight champ has been seen training in boxing with Freddie Roach, lifting weights, grappling, and all the other components to preparing for competition.
In any event, Silva’s recovery appears to be well ahead of schedule five months after he broke his leg while attempting to win back the title in a rematch with current champ Chris Weidman at UFC 168.
Now, the question is when the future UFC Hall of Famer will return. Soares said it is too early to pinpoint an exact time frame for Silva’s return, but agreed with a window UFC President Dana White gave MMAjunkie in a recent interview.
White repeatedly has said the ex-champ would return before the end of the year, but this past Friday said, “He could be the last fight of this year or the first fight of next year.”
Asked about a potential year-end return, White said, “That would be great.”
Earlier this year, Silva told a Brazilian media outlet that he wouldn’t return before the end of the year. White, though, didn’t put much stock in that opinion.
“What? Anderson Silva is saying something completely opposite of what’s happening? I don’t believe it,” he joked. “This is what he does every time he talks to the media. He says, ‘I absolutely will not fight Chael Sonnen again.’
“He always does that with the media. I don’t know if he likes to play with you guys or what he likes to do, but I said, he’ll be back in 2014 or first thing in 2015. End of 2014 or beginning of 2015 is what I said.”
Silva (33-6 MMA, 16-2 UFC), who lives in Los Angeles, linked up with the Kerlan-Jobe Clinic shortly after his injury, which awarded Weidman (11-0 MMA, 7-0 UFC) his second win over the once-dominant champ. The clinic has treated dozens of professional athletes and its doctors have served as team physicians for sports teams such as the Los Angeles Lakers.
Soares wouldn’t say who the 39-year-old champ wouldn’t like to fight next, though another chance to win the belt is undoubtedly at the top of the list.
“He’s not one to call anyone out particularly,” said Soares.
Silva, though, is more active than ever on social media, so that could change pretty quickly.