Anderson Silva, willing to do every step to compete in Rio
Former UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva isn’t worried about embarrassing himself when he attempts to make the 2016 Brazilian Taekwondo Olympic team.
During a recent press conference promoted by the Brazilian Taekwondo Confederation, the 40-year-old fighting legend explained that he will compete in all the steps necessary to participate in the games and hopes to add value to the sport he began practicing at the age of 7.
“The worst that can happen is I don’t make it, but I will try. I will devote myself. There is nothing impossible and that sometimes bothers people,” said Silva. “I came from nothing and I won everything I have to this day. This is a new challenge. I have to try to be better than I was yesterday and I try to think like this every day. I am moved the challenges and I’m not worried about embarrassing himself.
“I’m here to add and not to take the place of anyone, not to get in the way. I want to return to the sport all that it gave me,” he added.
Carlos Luiz Pinto Fernandes, president of the CBTKD welcomes Silva’s aspirations of becoming an Olympian, but assured that “The Spider” will not receive special treatment.
“The CBTKD see that Anderson will surprise most people. He adapts to any circumstance, he’s very intelligent, and I know we’re not making the wrong bet. He came to add, not divide. That is why he will attend sectionals and there will be no (special) privileges. It will be impossible to go above the rules, ” said Fernandes.
“He will be very welcome and I believe he will train and dedicate himself to achieve his goal. He seems pretty determined,” said Iris Sing, the second-ranked Taekwondo specialist in the World Ranking.
Silva hopes to bring more attention to Taekwondo. Regardless of how well he does at the upcoming sectionals, Silva couldn’t pass up on the opportunity to give back to the sport and potentially represent Brazil.
“I hope to help us to have more visibility and more people interested in practicing Taekwondo. This will be a very different challenge,” he said.
“Olympic athletes are super athletes. For me, it will be a unique opportunity and I am very happy with everything that’s happening. Regardless of (if I make it or not), just the fact that I participate in sectionals, even if I don’t win, I will be giving my contribution to the sport. I’m going to be able to show at least I tried.”
Silva is still mired in the process of determining what sanctions he might face after two failed drug tests in relation to his UFC 183 fight against Nick Diaz in Nevada. As such, it is unclear how the outcome of those proceedings might affect his Olympic bid, even if he were to make the Brazilian team.