Silva's time in the cage was quite literally a performance. He readily admitted after the bout that he took the fight only to save the event and, in his own words, "put on a show for everybody."
As Silva's career comes to an end, he is undergoing a metamorphosis. We've seen Silva the fighter, Silva the martial artist, Silva the champion ... on Saturday night, he was an entertainer. The reason is clear. At 37 years of age, he is keen to retire and evolve from an athlete into something new.
His growing media appearances in Brazil mark him out as a star with the potential to transition into the mainstream. In the fight with Bonnar, he demonstrated abilities as both a fighter and a showman. Whereas his past performances focused on results, Saturday night showed he was conscious of doing something people would enjoy.
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