After a long injury lay-off from a decision loss against former light heavyweight champion Forrest Griffin, former middleweight champion Rich Franklin returned to form by defeating fellow legend Wanderlei Silva in the UFC 147 headliner in Brazil.
Franklin and Silva had met before, in Germany, and Franklin walked away with the narrow decision victory. Unlike that battle, this war took place over the course of 5 rounds. While that gives Franklin the time to stay ahead using angles and a reach advantage, it also gives Silva more time to find an opportunity to swarm- and swarm he did.
Near the end of the second round Silva landed a big right hand to the chin of Franklin that dropped Franklin hard. Franklin recovered quickly, but Silva was all over him. The punishment was piling up, and the ref nearly stopped the fight, but Franklin was essentially saved by the bell.
The time in between rounds served Franklin well as he came back into the third round looking much better. Silva, unfortunately, seemed noticeably slower after the exhausting onslaught. But despite the slightly slowed step, Silva was in the fight for every second, always threatening with big punches.
At the end of the fight it was clear that both legends still have plenty of fight left in them and Franklin vocalized his desire to make one last title run in the middleweight division.