UFC officials recently announced that Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Fabricio Werdum will coach the second season of “The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil,” after which the heavyweights will toss aside their clipboards and strap on their gloves for a rematch that Nogueira says he is already eagerly anticipating.

“I’m very happy to fight Fabricio Werdum,” Nogueira said during a media conference call on Thursday. “He’s a very high-level opponent, and I’m pretty sure we’re going to make a really good fight.”

Nogueira and Werdum previously met in the quarterfinals of Pride’s 2006 open-weight grand prix, with “Minotauro” emerging victorious via unanimous decision. Six years after their initial showdown, Nogueira says that another victory over Werdum could propel him toward a return to the heavyweight division’s upper echelon.

“This next fight is going to be very important for me, because each fight that you win or lose is either one step forward or one step back,” said Nogueira. “I want to be between those guys in the Top-5.”

Nogueira recently returned to competition after spending 10 months on the shelf with a broken arm courtesy of Frank Mir at UFC 140. The former Pride champion stepped up on short notice to face Dave Herman three weeks ago at UFC 153, submitting his younger foe with a second-round armbar in front of a raucous crowd in Rio de Janeiro.

“This fight against Herman, for sure, was a challenge for me, because I just got back from my injury. They put 16 screws in my arm,” said Nogueira. “Coming back and fighting in Brazil was a big challenge and a big step. It was very important to me. I’m back again, and I want to fight the best guys.”

Should Nogueira get past Werdum, who is currently ranked fourth in the world, the veteran’s stock would surely rise. However, even if the 36-year-old continues to post big wins, his path to the title would still be impeded by his friend and training partner Junior dos Santos, who currently sits atop the heavyweight mountain. While Nogueira is still adamant that he would not challenge his teammate for the belt, the veteran says he would jump at the chance to fight for the championship under any other circumstance.

“I have no [desire] to fight Junior dos Santos. He’s my friend, and he’s my training partner. I saw this guy train since he was a purple belt,” said Nogueira. “But if there is ever a chance or a day when he does not have the title anymore, for sure, I would love to fight for the belt. That’s the goal of everyone in the heavyweight division.”

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

VIDEO: How Joanna Jedrzejczyk vs. Valerie Letourneau Came To Be for UFC 193

  • 27 days ago

Dana White announced recently that Valerie Letourneau, not Claudia Gadelha, would challenge Joanna Jedrzejczyk at UFC 193. Champion and challenger weigh in. read news >>

Geane Herrera calls out Ian McCall for UFC on FOX 17

  • 29 days ago

The flurry of bookings recently announced for December’s UFC on FOX 17 event have put the number of fights on the card at nine. Geane Herrera hopes to get one of the remaining spots.Filed under: News read news >>

UFC returns to London in 2016 with Feb. 27 event

  • 22 days ago

The UFC is returning to London in early 2016, officials today announced.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

Clay Guida Faces Thiago Tavares at UFC Fight Night 77

  • 20 days ago

UFC officials announced on Friday that Clay Guida would face Thiago Tavares in a featherweight bout at UFC Fight Night: Belfort vs. Henderson 3 on Nov. 7 in Sao Paulo, Brazil. read news >>

UFC Signs Polish MMA Prospects Karolina Kowalkiewicz and Damian Grabowski

  • 17 days ago

UFC officials on Monday announced the signings of women's strawweight Karolina Kowalkiewicz and heavyweight Damian Grabowski, both well-regarded MMA prospects hailing from Poland. Kowalkiewicz's sign read news >>

TJ Dillashaw vs. Dominick Cruz Title Fight Official for Boston’s TD Garden

  • 7 days ago

UFC officials announced on Thursday that UFC Fight Night 81: Dillashaw vs. Cruz will take place at Boston's TD Garden on Jan. 17. read news >>

Cain Velasquez says title rematch vs. Fabricio Werdum targeted for March in Brazil

  • 6 days ago

The heavyweight title rematch between Fabricio Werdum and Cain Velasquez was previously announced for next year, and now the bout has a targeted month and location.Filed under: Featured, News, UFC read news >>

UFC Appoints New VP of Europe, Middle East, and Africa

  • 2 days ago

UFC recently announced the appointment of James Elliott as Vice President and General Manager of Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA). read news >>

Fedor Emelianenko Could Face Jaideep Singh in Japan on New Year's Eve

  • 2 days ago

Fedor Emelianenko, the heavyweight legend who recently announced his return to MMA competition, could face converted kickboxer Jaideep Singh in Japan on Dec. 31. That's according to a report Tuesday read news >>

Conor McGregor and TUF 22 Premieres to Best Series TV Ratings in Two Years

  • 27 days ago

Conor McGregor, Urijah Faber, and 16 exciting fights propelled the two-hour premiere of TUF 22 to its most-watched season debut on FS1 since the fall of 2013. read news >>