Anderson Silva responds to Conor McGregor: 'Let's do this for the fans'

Former UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva said he would be open to fighting Conor McGregor. Jeff Bottari/Getty Images

Conor McGregor has his hands full on Saturday night against Khabib Nurmagomedov, but on Monday's episode of Ariel Helwani's MMA Show he raised a lot of eyebrows when he said he would like to fight Anderson Silva.

"I'd be interested in an Anderson Silva bout," McGregor said on the ESPN podcast. "I swear to God. Anderson is a legend of the game. I'm sure he's hunting for a few quid as well."

Silva, the former UFC middleweight champion whose United States Anti-Doping Agency suspension for two banned substances expires on Nov. 10, heard about McGregor's interest and is open to fighting McGregor next.

Below is a conversation between Silva and ESPN.com about the potential dream matchup.

What did you think when you heard Conor say he was interested in fighting you?

"That's a dream come true. That would be an amazing fight."

Were you surprised that he mentioned you?

"No, he's a legend, I'm a legend. Let's go do this for the fans. Hopefully McGregor doesn't do the same as Georges St-Pierre. He talked about fighting me and then he run and run and run."

He said that he thinks you might need the money that comes with fighting him, is that true?

[Laughs.] "You know, that's very interesting. Everybody needs money, especially McGregor, when you're buying castles and private jets and doing something crazy and need lawyers. I've been there."

What weight could you do this at?

"I believe 180 [pounds] is perfect. I'm ready for that."

That's the lowest you can go?


Have you heard from the UFC about this fight yet?

"No, not yet. I need to talk to the big boss, Dana White, to make it happen. C'mon, Dana. Uncle Dana, let's do this. It's a very interesting fight, especially because it's two strikers. Let's go do this for the fans."

Who do you think wins the fight on Saturday night between McGregor and Nurmagomedov?

"For me, personally, I think this is a boring fight because everybody knows Khabib will try to put McGregor in the ground. I believe they both have a chance, but it will be very boring. Me and McGregor will be a super fight. Don't run, buddy. Don't run. I'm ready for you. I think McGregor needs to take this fight. Two of the best strikers in this sport: me and McGregor. That's amazing."

Are you going to the fight on Saturday?

"No, I'm a training a lot. I'm training and waiting for McGregor. Hopefully McGregor doesn't destroy the bus when he fights with me. Don't go crazy. Be professional."