Silva upsets Chavez by decision in boxing return

Manuel Velasquez / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Anderson Silva pulled off a massive upset in his return to boxing.

The MMA legend defeated former WBC middleweight champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. via split decision (75-77, 77-75, 77-75) in an eight-round boxing match Saturday in Guadalajara, Mexico.

"Boxing was my dream for many, many years," Silva said in his postfight interview. "And I need to prove my respect for boxing. I cannot come here and not do my best."

Chavez had a strong start, but Silva took over in the second half of the fight. He stayed busier and landed the heavier shots, mixing up his striking arsenal with jabs, hooks, and uppercuts. "The Spider" edged Chavez 99-53 in total strikes.

Afterward, Silva said he may return to the boxing ring in the near future.

"Maybe I fight very soon," he said.

Silva, a former UFC middleweight champion and one of the greatest MMA fighters of all time, stepped into a boxing ring for the first time since 2005. The 46-year-old improved his professional boxing record to 2-1 with the victory. This was the first time Silva's hand was raised - in MMA or boxing - since a 2017 win in the Octagon.

Silva parted ways with the UFC in late 2020 after suffering his third straight loss. The Brazilian legend competed in the promotion for 14 years and said ahead of the Chavez bout that he's likely done with MMA.

Chavez, 35, is now 1-3 in his past four outings. He held the WBC title from 2011-12.

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Silva upsets Chavez by decision in boxing return
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