Sunday, July 20, 2008 | 12:53 a.m.
There was only one thing left to say Saturday after the main event of UFC Fight Night at the Palms: Anderson Silva.
"All you need to say is his name -- it's almost household like Michael Jordan," fellow fighter Brandon Vera said. "James (Irvin) is a friend of mine. He went in there like a warrior — but it's Anderson Silva."
The man they call "The Spider" wasted no time spinning webs Saturday night. He showed his explosive power and pinpoint precision by knocking out Irvin after just 61 seconds in front of a sell-out crowd of 2,100 that included movie star Jamie Foxx, singer Usher, Boston Celtics star Paul Pierce and, of course, Palms owner George Maloof.
"Does anybody doubt now who the pound-for-pound best fighter in the world is?" UFC president Dana White said.
Well, actually, Fedor Emelianenko might, considering he submitted former UFC fighter Tim Sylvia in just 36 seconds at Affliction's "Banned" event Saturday night in California. But that's an argument for a different time, although White had plenty to say about the start-up company (not a whole lot of positives though: "After tonight, those guys are going out of business and all those fighters are coming over here.")
Still, the argument for Silva is a good one. Just ask Irvin.
"He's a scary dude," said Irvin, sporting a fresh cut under his right eye, where Silva connected with a big right hand. "The guy's only human. Eventually someone is gonna come in there and knock him out. But right now the guy's on a roll -- he’s unbeatable.
"I got a flash knockout," Irvin continued. "I didn’t know what hit me. I woke up covered in blood."
It briefly appeared as though Irvin might survive Silva's right hand when he blocked the first of a flurry of punches after being knocked down.
"Nah, I was out," Irvin said with a laugh.
A bigger-looking Silva (22-4), who was fighting for the first time at the light heavyweight division in the UFC, said he capitalized on Irvin’s mistake.
"Like in a chess game he happened to move the wrong piece and I countered," Silva said through translator Ed Soares. "I was very happy about the win. Now it's over. Soon as I left the octagon, I started looking forward to going back to Brazil and training for the next fight."
White said that will likely happen in September. He insisted that Silva will go back to his normal weight.
"I don't want to campaign him," White said of sticking Silva at the 205-pound division with the likes of Quinton "Rampage" Jackson and current champ Forrest Griffin. "He wants to fight at 185, defend his title and stick his big toe in the 205-pound division and see how it goes."
If it's anything like Saturday night, things will likely go smoothly for Silva. That's how it goes when you're on top of the world -- just ask his most recent opponent’s mom.
"This time it wasn't that bad," said Irvin's mother, Tracy, when asked how she was coping with the loss. "I like the guy who beat him."