Chael Sonnen defies pre-fight threats

Top middleweight contender Chael Sonnen told ESPN.com on Tuesday that he isn't the least bit worried about the threats UFC champion Anderson Silva directed at him Monday during a media call.

"He says he's going to knock out my teeth and break my jaw and break my head and all this," Sonnen said. "He acts like I've never been to the orthodontist.

"I've fought 49 men, all professionals. He acts like I've never had a jaw set before. He acts like I've never had my head stapled shut in an emergency room before.

"Who gives a damn? He can do all those things." he added. "But one thing he didn't say is that he's going to beat me. One thing he didn't say he'd break is my will. One thing he didn't say he'd do is win this fight. We'll be in the middle of a cage stupid; I'd expect you to do those things."

Silva (31-4) and Sonnen will meet in a middleweight title bout July 7 at UFC 148 in Las Vegas. It will be the second fight between them.

In their previous bout at UFC 117 on Aug. 7, 2010, Silva retained his 185-pound belt with a fifth-round armbar triangle.

Though Silva was able to apply that submission hold at 3:10 of the final round, Sonnen thoroughly dominated the fight up to that point.

Sonnen (27-11-1) has continued to verbally taunt Silva ever since. But the champion has shown little desire to respond in a similar fashion, until Monday.

"What I'm going to do inside the Octagon is something that's going to change the image of the sport," the Portuguese-speaking Silva said through his translator and manager Ed Soares. "I'm going to make sure every one of his teeth are broken, his arms are broken, his legs are broken.

"He's not going to be able to walk out of the Octagon by himself. I can guarantee that."

Sonnen was on the media call and heard every word Silva directed toward him. But before he could respond his phone line went mute.

Silva's angry outburst could be a sign that Sonnen has gotten inside his head. But Sonnen's intention was never to win a battle of the minds.

"I don't care where he's at (mentally)," Sonnen said. "There's no gamesmanship or anything else. I simply don't care where he's at. I focus purely on myself.

"Anderson's a (jerk) and he always has been," he said. "And it came out (Monday); that was nice to see.

"I've been trying to reveal him for quite a while now, so it's nice when that finally came out. But that was it. That was the end of my joy."