Although he just finished battling a Brazilian champion in Lyoto Machida, newly minted light heavyweight king Mauricio “Shogun” Rua claims he would have no qualms standing opposite MMA’s most efficient striker.
“Yes, of course. I’m a professional fighter,” Rua told ESPN2’s MMA Live crew when asked if he would like to defend his title against UFC middleweight champ Anderson Silva.
While most have made it perfectly clear they would prefer not to face friends or teammates, Shogun would like to test his skills against Silva, despite their cordial relationship and history together at the famed Chute Boxe academy many moons ago.
Silva was last seen turning UFC 112 into his personal circus sideshow act in April. Following his third consecutive lackluster title defense, UFC president Dana White threatened to cut his assassin if he ever reverted back to his “embarrassing” antics again.
If a challenge is what Silva has been seeking, then a 205-pound championship tango with Shogun might be exactly what “The Spider” needs to recapture his mojo.
Shogun holds a dominant 19-4 record and has finished in 17 of those wins. Many experts wondered if he would be able to go circa PrideFC after undergoing multiple knee surgeries, however he answered all those questions by trouncing the previously-unbeaten Machida.
A permanent move to the light heavyweight division has long been discussed for Silva, who owns a dominant 26-4 record and is perfect through his last 12 Octagon scraps. Although White has already assigned the 35-year-old to Chael Sonnen at UFC 117, with former top contender Vitor Belfort being promised a shot as well.
However, White has already stated the winner of the UFC 114 fight between former champs Quinton “Rampage” Jackson and Rashad Evans is not guaranteed a shot at the crown, so who knows what the brash promoter might have up his sleeve.