Before Luke Rockhold was even in the UFC while reigning as the Strikeforce middleweight champion, he wanted nothing more than to test himself against Anderson Silva in the Octagon.
At the time, Rockhold was the champion in one promotion while Silva was the multi-time defending king of the UFC. When Rockhold was finally brought over to the UFC, he wasn’t offered a fight against Silva much to his chagrin and now years later they still have never met.
But now that Rockhold is the new UFC middleweight champion and Silva is once again interested in the title belt he held onto for nearly seven years, it appears their paths could potentially cross.
"I’m very interested in that fight. That’s a fight I’ve wanted for a very long time," Rockhold told FOX Sports about the possibility of facing Silva. "We were both reigning champions in the top two organizations. I had my sights set on it, they didn’t give it to me, they didn’t think I had earned or was worthy of it. I’ve proven myself now.
"Now we’ve got Anderson Silva asking for that fight. That’s what I’m all about."
Rockhold is still awaiting word on his first title defense but all signs are currently pointing towards a championship rematch with Chris Weidman later this year.
As for Silva, Rockhold has nothing but respect for the longest reigning champion in UFC history but the same rules apply for him as any other contender coming to take his belt.
"These guys think they have a chance and I’m going to go out there a better fighter every time and make them not want that opportunity," Rockhold said. "That’s what I want every time I go out there, I want guys to not even think about getting in there with me.
"I didn’t have my best performance last time so next time out, I’m going to make people fear me."