BURBANK — Just five days in front of what many prognosticate will be the biggest Ultimate Fighting Championship event of the year, Chael Sonnen — the No. 1 contender to champion Anderson Silva's UFC middleweight title at Saturday night's UFC 148 in Las Vegas — touched down in Burbank.
Regarded for his superior wrestling and ground-and-pound skills inside the cage as much as his ability to talk the talk outside of it, Sonnen, seated next to girlfriend Brittany Smith, tipped his chair back and held court among a gathering of print, Internet and television media on Monday afternoon at Morton's The Steakhouse.
"Everything. It's everything," said Sonnen when asked about the magnitude of Saturday's title rematch against Silva, ranked by most as the top pound-for-pound fighter in the world. "This whole process since I was 9 years old will be a colossal failure if I don't win the championship."