Silva will get a rematch with Chris Weidman — who ended Silva’s nearly seven-year reign of the division with a knockout a week ago — at UFC 168 inside the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Dec. 28, the UFC announced on Saturday.
“He hadn’t lost in seven or eight years,” UFC president Dana White told FOX Sports. “I think once he got home he got fired up again. He’s a competitor. It was hard to a imagine a guy like that wouldn’t want a rematch.”
Silva had successfully defended his middleweight championship 10 times and had a 16-fight winning streak before Weidman knocked him out in the second round of UFC 162 at the same venue last Saturday.
After one of the biggest upsets in UFC history, Silva didn’t seem too enthused about attempting to win back the crown.
“Really, right now, I’m thinking going home,” Silva after his first loss in the UFC. “I want to be with my kids. I want to take some time off, maybe three to four months off to think about what I’m going to do.”
White said it’s clear things changed quickly once Silva returned home to his native Brazil.
“It’s losing that affected him,” White said when asked what changed Silva’s mind. “He doesn’t like to lose. (Silva’s manager) Ed Soares told me he won’t let his kids win at video games. I think the loss took a little bit to set before he realized he was no longer No. 1 pound-for-pound in the world or the middleweight champ.”
Saturday’s surprising announcement made the previously schedule main event — UFC women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey vs. her rival coach on the upcoming Ultimate Fighter, Miesha Tate — the co-main event.