It’s been almost 6 months since the most recent Pride middleweight Grand Prix champion has stepped into the ring, but for Mauricio “Shogun” Rua the wait is almost over. After injuring his arm during a takedown in his last fight in February versus Mark “The Hammer” Coleman, Shogun has been preparing for his eventual return. Shogun spoke with MMAWeekly about his training, recovery and the who and when for his next fight.
“Recovery is coming very well and I’m looking forward to fighting in October,” said Shogun. “I want to fight Mark Coleman and hopefully he’ll accept the fight. The last fight was a mishap and I don’t think it will happen again.”
The awkward landing from Coleman’s takedown broke Rua’s arm which cost him the fight, only the 2nd loss in his professional career and the first since being defeated by Renato “Babalu” Sobral in 2003. After being named Fighter of the Year by MMAWeekly in 2005, Shogun was looking forward to a promising 2006 before the injury. Now despite going up in weight to fight for a 2nd time, Shogun seems focused on only one thing….Mark Coleman.
“I think its going to be Coleman. I hope its going to be Coleman, but its still not for sure. My sights are set on Coleman,” said Rua about the prospects of his next fight.
The takedown from Coleman caused the injury but despite the former NCAA wrestler’s obvious ground skill, Shogun seems unimpressed and will look to land heavy shots early on in their next fight and put all the controversy surrounding their first fight behind him.
“He is a great wrestler, but I’m not too worried about his wrestling. I’m going to do what I always do and I’m going for the knockout. I’m not concerned about his wrestling because I’m going to knock him out,” said Shogun.
With Shogun stating that his next fight will likely be in October, the chances of him being one of the headlining stars on Pride’s debut American show from Las Vegas are pretty good. Coleman has been quoted previously that he wants to fight back in the United States and this rematch along with Pride’s U.S. debut would seem to fit perfectly together.
While the injury has sidelined Shogun these past months, his training regimens have picked back up and he has been training at full strength for the past 3 weeks getting ready for whoever his opponent may just be but listening to him, the rematch with Coleman is definitely the #1 priority on his mind.