Redemption on tap at UFC 97

Chuck (The Iceman) Liddell is coming off a devastating knockout loss to Rashad Evans. Tonight he...

Chuck (The Iceman) Liddell is coming off a devastating knockout loss to Rashad Evans. Tonight he faces PRIDE FC veteran Mauricio (Shogun) Rua. (UFC photo)

NEIL SPRINGER -- SLAM! Sports

, Last Updated: 3:53 PM ET

It's not often a UFC show nickname perfectly sums up the nature of the event.

With cheesy monikers like "Bad Intentions" -- as opposed to "Good Intentions," I guess -- "Ill Will" and "Seek and Destroy," the naming of UFC events has been less than inspired at times.

However, at "UFC 97: Redemption," many fighters have the opportunity to redeem themselves to the fans.

While middleweight champion Anderson (The Spider) Silva has been a one-man wrecking crew in the UFC, his last performance left many scratching their heads. At UFC 90, puzzled fans looked on as Silva almost refused to engage with challenger Patrick (The Predator) Cote. Silva was still landing effective counterstrikes, but only won after Cote injured his knee and couldn't continue.

Silva stands firm that everything went according to plan against Cote.

"What we trained for was done in the fight," Silva said. "Unfortunately for Patrick Cote, he had an opportunity but I kicked him pretty well in the second round, which I think led to his knee popping out in the third.

"Contrary to what people think, I was very motivated for the Patrick Cote fight. My motivation is to be one of the best mixed-martial-arts fighters of all time."

Despite Silva's comments, fans will be expecting a more impressive display against title challenger Thales Leites to erase the bad taste left from the Cote bout. To do this, he'll have to get by the tough Braziliam Jiu Jitsu black belt.

Leites said he's confident in his skills and feels he can dethrone the middleweight king.

"He's a very well-rounded fighter -- he's one of the best, pound-for-pound, in the world," Leites said. "Anything can happen during a fight, but I believe in my game and Jiu Jitsu skills. I know that I can win.

"This is the fight of my life and I don't want to let it go."

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