Anderson Silva vs. Chael Sonnen II: Can It Live Up to the Hype?

Michael Hatamoto@MhatamotoContributor IIIJuly 4, 2012

Chael Sonnen will enter the cage at UFC 148 against Anderson Silva in four days time as a marked man.

After relentless trash talk and self-promotion, it’s finally time for Sonnen to put up or shut up. 

For two years since their first encounter, which Sonnen lost via submission, the so-called “American Gangster” has repeatedly attacked Silva. The anticipation leading up to this fight has been intense, with MMA fans disappointed by a rash of injuries ruining several other marquee matchups.

Meanwhile, Silva remained silent and well composed, until he absolutely snapped during a UFC 148 conference call last week.  It was an unexpected and shocking revelation that Silva is human—and that he is tired of all the talking from his brash, cocky opponent.

During a press conference on Tuesday, Sonnen unleashed his verbal attacks on Silva yet again.

Chael - People said it shouldn't be personal but it is personal. I don't offer apologies. I don't care. Where was he the four years before?

— Bleacher Report MMA (@BR_MMA) July 3, 2012

However, the excitement truly happened when both men stood for a traditional stare down, where Silva bumped into Sonnen.

We know about all the hype and pre-fight banter—but can the fight live up to such high expectations that have been created by the media and fans alike?  Some people already seem skeptical about the fight, but MMA fans won't be disappointed whether they are in attendance or watch on pay-per-view. 

The fight will absolutely live up to all of the pre-fight hype.  Whether we get to enjoy watching Silva brutalize his American opponent, or if Sonnen can control on the ground, we should be treated to a great main event. 

Sonnen was in complete control during their last encounter, able to land clean shots on his feet and control the action on the ground—but still managed to get caught in a heroic, yet surprising come from behind by Silva.

All of the trash talk stops on Saturday night, when Silva and Sonnen meet inside the cage again.  Either the dominant champion will continue his title reign, or the loud-mouthed challenger will learn from his mistakes in the first fight.