Dana White ‘forgot’ he banned Wanderlei Silva as Silva inducted into UFC Hall of Fame

In a surprising turn of events, Wanderlei Silva has been granted entry into the prestigious UFC Hall of Fame.

He was previously banned due to his outspoken criticisms on social media following a complex PED scandal in 2014. Silva faced a lifetime ban from the NSAC.

Silva found himself in the midst of controversy, publicly condemning the UFC on his social media channels. But after years of ban, Silva will now be inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame.

UFC CEO Dana White recognized Silva as a true pioneer of MMA, praising his combat style and crediting him for delivering some of the most memorable bouts in combat sports history.

He said in a press release: “Wanderlei Silva is one of the true pioneers of the sport of MMA. Wanderlei was an absolute savage who left his mark by delivering some of the most memorable fights in combat sports history.”

“He had legendary fights against Mirko Cro Crop, Chuck Liddell, Dan Henderson, Brian Stann, and his fights against Rich Franklin, as they were absolute wars! He was also one of the early superstars of PRIDE who helped grow the MMA fanbase on a global scale, and it will be an honor to induct him into the UFC Hall of Fame this summer.”

Silva’s induction into the UFC Hall of Fame is scheduled for this summer, and is a testament to his contributions to the sport. He will share this honor with former UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar.

At the press conference after UFC 298, White stated: “He deserves to be in the hall of fame. Everybody that was a hardcore fan back then was a big fan of PRIDE. A lot of big stars came out of there and Wanderlei [Silva] has done a lot for the sport in the early days and he deserves to be in there.”

When asked if he remembers that Silva was banned, White replied: “I’ve been in so many beefs with so many people that I didn’t even remember that [he was banned] until you just told me. Good thing I forgot!”

Silva has a professional record of 35-14-1, 1 NC. He hasn’t competed since his defeat to Rampage Jackson at Bellator 206 in late 2018.

In response to the unexpected induction, Silva humbly stated: “This means a lot because every fighter in the world wants to be in the hall of fame. This is a great sport and I’m so glad to be part of it right now. I didn’t know nothing [about the induction]. They were so close to making me cry. I never thought this was gonna happen. I’m so happy UFC gave me this honor.”