The question of who will be Mauricio “Shogun” Rua's next opponent in the Octagon has been answered by UFC President Dana White. According to a report found by mmajunkie.com, Rua will be facing another heavy-handed Brazilian in the form of Thiago Silva. Rumored to be taking place at UFC 149 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, the fight will be on the same card as the aforementioned Jose Aldo/Erik Koch Featherweight title fight. With the potential for fireworks high here, UFC 149 is shaping up to be an incredibly exciting night for the UFC.
Shogun has had an up-and-down UFC career, having obtained the Light Heavyweight championship with a knockout of former champion Lyoto Machida in 2010. However, after suffering a debilitating knee injury in that win, he was on the shelf for some time before coming back to a buzz-saw in Jon Jones, who took the belt from Rua in brutal fashion. He rebounded well with a knockout of Forest Griffin in Brazil, and then lost a razor-thin decision to Dan Henderson at UFC 139 last November. While his UFC record is nothing spectacular on paper, Mauricio Rua puts on exciting matches, win or lose, as evident by the talk that his battle with Henderson was the best fight of 2011, if not one of the best fights ever.
Silva will step into the cage with a tall task in front of him. After losing a decision recently to young star Alexander Gustafsson at UFC on Fuel TV 2, Silva has several questions to answer. While still sporting an impressive record, he looked a bit slow and one-dimensional against Gustafsson's quick movement. Much of this can be attributed to the ring rust of a year-long layoff due to suspension, but the Light Heavyweight division of the UFC is astronomically skilled at this point in time.