mma / News

Mauricio Rua Explains Why It Took Him So Long To Come Back

January 9, 2017 | Posted by Joseph Lee

In an interview with MMA Fighting, Mauricio “Shogun” Rua explained his long absence from the Octagon. He will return to the UFC on March 11 at UFC Fight Night 107 against Gian Villante. Here are highlights:

On his long absence: “The focus was to fight in Brasilia in September, but I had a little tendinitis that didn’t let me train harder. It was no big deal, but it was a bit painful. They asked me if I could fight in Sao Paulo (on Nov. 19), but I couldn’t either. I’m 100 percent now. I’m training well, and ready to go.”

On his approach to fighting Villante: “I know him a little. I’ll start studying him now, but I know he likes to strike and to go for takedowns. He’s well-rounded. He has good hands, good takedowns. I’ll train hard to be prepared in all areas and don’t get surprised, of course. I hope I can use my muay thai in this fight. I think he will strike to close the distance and take me down. For sure, he will try to take me down and stay on top, which is an advantage. I think he will fight strategically, but I will be prepared to win the fight.”

On working his way back to the light heavyweight belt: “I’m No. 7 in the rankings, but I’ll tell you the truth, I don’t focus too much on rankings and the belt. My focus is on the opponent in front of me. I can’t think about somebody else while I have someone tough in front of me. My focus is on him. I’m 100 percent focused on this fight, and everything else is consequence. My biggest dream is the belt, but I’ve been through this experience before, and I know that if I think about the belt before fighting my next opponent, that might not get me motivated. I’m more experienced now, and I know I have to think about my next opponent. This is what motivates me.”

article topics :

Mauricio Shogun Rua, Joseph Lee

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