Talk is rampant regarding Silva's need for a win in this fight. Jardine though is probably in the same boat. He mentioned that he was something of an expendable fighter, the UFC didn't have much invested in him. Therefore, one could assume that with a loss to Wanderlei he will have to grab his work gloves and lunch box and trudge back to work numerous times to get back in the mix for the light heavyweight belt.
3 Maybe the most talked about number leading up to this fight, (3) the number of losses in a row for 31-8-1 Wanderlei Silva. This number has led to thoughts of the "must win" situation for Silva. But really is it all that important. He's put on three great fights and all fans, whether in Japan or the United States, love a warrior. Besides he hasn't exactly been fighting spring chickens...
779 Through a combined 86 fights, the winning percentage (77.9) of Wanderlei Silva's last three opponents and it's safe to say all three of them can fight a little bit: Chuck Liddell 21-5, Dan Henderson 22-7, and Mirko "Cro Cop" 23-6-2. So yes Silva is struggling through a three fight losing streak, but come on...
677 Percentage (67.7) of Silva's 31 victories to come via (T)KO. He is a man who likes to strike and in an interview at Sherdog.com said of his opponent Jardine, "...He's a dangerous guy. I think it's going to be a very hard fight. It won't be easy. That's why I've trained everyday. I'm prepared for all circumstances, either to fight on the feet or on the floor. I want to knock him out. If he wants to strike with me, I will knock him down. He deserves all my respect for being a tough guy, and I'm sure that we are going to make a great performance for the public. The ticket will be worthwhile."
21 In Keith Jardine's last three fights he is (2-1). In December of 2006 he TKO'd Forrest Griffin at UFC 66, a card that featured Chuck Liddell vs. Tito Ortiz. Then eleven months ago, last May, he was stunned by Houston Alexander only 0:49 into the fight, again on a card that featured Liddell, this time against Quinton Jackson. Finally, he fought the man featured on his last two cards and as we all know stunned many fans when he scored a split decision over Liddell at UFC 76.
462 Percentage (46.2) of Keith Jardine's 13 wins to come via (T)KO. Currently he is 13-3-1 and understands that he is in another big fight. Sure it's not for the title, but he appreciates his position nonetheless. He recently stated at a UFC press conference, "I got an opportunity here to string two wins together against the greatest fighters of all time. To me, that means more than a title. In the context of history, it's a lot greater than that. I understand the game. The UFC doesn't have anything invested in me. I didn't win the reality show. I'm a very expendable fighter for them. I understand that. People think I should be mad, but I'm pretty excited. In the context of history, this Silva fight seems like it means a lot more than a title fight."
14 In Jardine's last fight, the huge win over Liddell, he was paid ($14,000), $7,000 to show and $7,000 to win. Seems like chump change for something of a historical win, especially when considering Liddell pulled in a cool half a million. Of course Jardine has sponsors and will have them at UFC 84 as well...uh oh, not so fast. In an interview at Sherdog.com he mentioned he launched a new line of "Mean" brand fight clothing and plans on wearing it to the cage on Saturday, he then said, "It's just real simple, retro kind of looking, cool colors. I'm pretty proud of it. I sacrificed a lot of money actually for this fight just because I decided to wear my own shirt into the ring and see if this thing can fly or not. It's kind of stressful, too, because if you look at what I get paid and everything, I get paid a lot more in sponsorships than I do on my UFC contract."
Tell you what Keith, you put on a heck of a showing against Wanderlei (and I know you will), I'm going to click over to http://www.meanstyle.com/ and buy one of those shirts.
To read more about UFC 84 and watch a video of both Jardine and Silva talk about the fight, check out my official blog Sports by the Numbers MMA.