Silva plans to use his superb ground game to notch the victory over Hunt, and then he'll turn his attention to Barnett.
"He’s a striker with a huge experience, did some great fights at K-1, so the perfect way to win this fight would obviously be using my jiu-jitsu," Silva told MMAFighting.com of Hunt. "I’ve trained a lot of jiu-jitsu and wrestling, but I also worked on my striking game. The fight starts standing and I have to be prepared for everything.
"If I see some openings to end the fight standing, I will. I’ve always did great against strikers, like Alistair Overeem, Travis Browne, Fedor Emelianenko. I’ll go for the knockout if I have the opportunity, but taking him to the ground will be my game plan."
Silva and Hunt have trained together before, but both men know they have a job to do. Sometimes that job includes punching a friend in the face.
"Fighting someone that you know and like is complicated, but it’s part of our job," Silva said. "I fight for my family and fans, people need my support every day, so I have to be professional. We’ll respect each other when the fight starts, and we’ll be friends and train together again after the fight, no problem. But when I get in there, winning is the only thing I’m going to think about."
Silva admits he'll be watching the scrap between Travis Browne and Josh Barnett that is set for UFC 168, as he thinks he'll probably fight the winner of that bout.
"Travis Browne is a great athlete and has been evolving ever since we fought," Silva said. "He got a great knockout against Overeem, but I think there was a mistake in his fight against (Gabriel Gonzaga) because he finished the fight with elbows to the back of the head. His win over Overeem was great, though. But I’ll root for him against Josh Barnett.
"I’m not the type of fighter that chooses opponents," he continued. "I will fight whoever the UFC puts in front of me. But if they give me the opportunity to choose, I’d like to fight Barnett. We have a history, and that’s why I’d want this fight."
UFC Fight Night 33 is set to go down on Dec. 6 on FOX Sports 1 in Brisbane, Australia.
Here's a look at the full UFC Fight Night 33 card:
Main card (Fox Sports 1 at 9 p.m. ET)
- Mark Hunt vs. Antonio Silva
- Mauricio Rua vs. James Te Huna
- Ryan Bader vs. Anthony Perosh
- Pat Barry vs. Soa Palelei
- Dylan Andrews vs. Clint Hester
- Julie Kedzie vs. Bethe Correia
Undercard (FOX Sports 2 at 7 p.m. ET)
- Takeya Mizugaki vs. Nam Phan
- Nick Ring vs. Caio Magalhaes
- Richie Vaculik vs. Justin Scoggins
- Bruno Santos vs. Krzysztof Jotko
Undercard (Watch here at 6:30 p.m. ET)
- Ben Wall vs. Alex Garcia