UFC Fight Night 29: Silva vs. HamillWednesday, October 9 – 10:30 p.m. ET
Thiago Silva (15-3) vs. Matt Hamill (12-4)Light heavyweight bout
Line: Silva -340, Hamill +260
Thiago Silva looks to build off his last victory as he goes up against one of the toughest fighters in UFC history in Matt “The Hammer” Hamill at UFC Fight Night in Brazil on Wednesday night.
In his victory over Rafael Cavalcante on June 8, Silva showed his knockout ability by delivering the decisive blow with just 30 seconds to go in the first round. Silva has faced some of the very best that the sport has to offer, and taken them the distance. His last two losses are to Rashad Evans and Alexander Gustafsson, who showed how special he is last month by taking Jon Jones the distance. Silva will be going up against Hamill, who is one of the best stories in all of UFC. He is also the only fighter who has a victory over Jon Jones on his resume, although it was because Jones got disqualified for illegal elbows. But Hamill has an impressive list of victories, including 2010 wins over both Tito Ortiz and Keith Jardine. He is a terrific wrestler, something that Silva has struggled with at times. However, in the end, it will not matter as SILVA is just too big and powerful for Hamill. Look for this match to end very quickly.
There is no doubt how Silva wants to end this match, and that is by way of the knockout. Of his 15 career victories, 13 of them have come by way of knockout. He has extreme power in his fists, and is looking to turn the fight into a brawl, as five of his past nine fights have ended in the first round. Silva lands 3.6 significant strikes per minute, and is very accurate, connecting on 51 percent of those strikes. In those defeats to Evans and Gustafsson, he showed better than expected cardio by going the distance against those fighters. While Silva is not likely to finish a match with a submission, he has the ability to score points by way of takedown. He has a takedown accuracy of 47 percent, which is much better than the great wrestler Hamill (36 percent). If Silva comes out focused and takes care of business, he should be able to get the victory. However, if there is one thing that many UFC fighters have learned though the years, it is to not overlook Hamill.
Of Hamill’s 12 victories, six have come by way of knockout and six by decision. He does an outstanding job of wearing down his opponents and gaining points throughout the fight to secure the victory. Even though he has the six victories by way of knockout, the last thing he really wants to do is go punch-for-punch against a guy with the power of Silva. Hamil's past three victories have come by way of decision, including an impressive UFC 121 victory over Tito Ortiz. Hamill, who is giving one inch to Silva, has a tremendous 92% takedowns defended rate. The one thing known about Hamill is that he will keep fighting the entire bout. If he can survive an early flurry of punches thrown by Silva, then there is a chance for him to steal a victory, which would be his seventh in his past nine bouts.