When Anderson Silva and Yushin Okami square off Saturday night for the UFC middleweight championship in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, it won't be the first time the two men have gone to war. The pair's highly-anticipated headlining bout at UFC 134 is actually a rematch of a contest from 2006.
Silva and Okami met in the first round of Rumble on the Rock's welterweight tournament. The event -- held in Hawaii, emceed by Bruce Buffer, and run by J.D. Penn, brother of B.J. Penn -- featured a star-studded cast of future MMA names, including Jake Shields, Carlos Condit, and Frank Trigg.
"The Spider" dominated the opening minutes of the bout, peppering Okami with shots from all over the cage, but a brief lapse of judgment midway through the first round resulted in a wayward illegal upkick from Silva's back that knocked "Thunder" out cold. After being given ample time to recover, the Japanese star was unable to regain his senses and doctors stepped in to stop the fight.
Okami was given the win via disqualification and continued on to the second round of the tournament, where he lost to Jake Shields via majority decision after a 15 minute back-and-forth war.
Silva moved on as well -- eventually becoming the pound-for-pound king of mixed martial arts -- yet the loss to Okami always loomed as the only blemish on the Brazilian's record in the last seven years. Now he'll get a chance to rectify it inside the familiar walls of his native country on Saturday night.