MENU
#UFC 216 #Conor McGregor #Nick Diaz #Tony Ferguson #Rizin 7 #Nate Diaz #Quinton Jackson #GSP #Kevin Lee #Pancrase


Forrest Griffin faces a stern test in his rematch with Mauricio Rua. | Photo: Dave Mandel


When Forrest Griffin toes the line against Mauricio “Shogun” Rua in the UFC 134 co-main event on Saturday at the HSBC Arena in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, he will attempt to pull off a feat no one else can match: beating the 2005 Pride Fighting Championships middleweight grand prix winner twice.

Griffin’s stunning submission victory over Rua at UFC 76 in 2007 remains one of the sport’s most-talked-about upsets, and it launched “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 1 winner into a new stratosphere in terms of MMA stardom. Less than a year later, he fought and defeated Quinton “Rampage” Jackson to capture the UFC light heavyweight championship. Griffin views the win over Rua as a turning point in his career.

“It’s below winning TUF, which is the biggest thing I’ve ever done, and winning the belt, which would be the second-biggest thing I’ve ever done,” he said during a pre-fight teleconference. “It’s up there. Obviously, it was pretty big for me at the time. It sort of got me a title shot.”

Rua sympathizers often point to the fact that he entered his first matchup with Griffin at far less than 100 percent. In fairness, he did not fight again for 16 months, the layoff the result of two reconstructive knee surgeries.

“I watched the fight again,” Griffin said. “He looked pretty good to me.”

Still, even Griffin admits Rua has become an entirely different animal in subsequent appearances, including first-round finishes against UFC hall of famer Chuck Liddell and then-UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida. Ever dangerous, Rua appears to have adjusted and adapted to life in the Octagon.

“Guys maybe at their core don’t change, but he looks a lot different,” Griffin said. “[The first time we fought], that was his first fight in the UFC. That was his first fight in a cage. That was his first fight without kicks on the ground, so, it’s different [this time around].”

As in their first encounter, Griffin will enter the cage as the underdog. He likes how he matches up with the Brazilian, and he welcomed the rematch.

“I think it’s still a reasonably good fight for me,” Griffin said. “You look around at 205 [pounds]; find me an easy fight. There’s no easy fights at the top. The Top 10 guys at 205 are all pretty good, so it doesn’t really matter [who I’m fighting at this level].”

Griffin -- who last fought at UFC 126 in February, when he outpointed former middleweight champion Rich Franklin at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas -- will enter the cage backed by the modest momentum of a two-fight winning streak. He understands the enormous challenge he faces in Rua, who not only hungers to avenge his loss to Griffin but wants to erase the memories left over from his one-sided drubbing at the hands of Jon Jones in March.

“I think you just try and prepare,” Griffin said. “When you watch Shogun and see how good he fought against Chuck Liddell, you just try and be ready for that Shogun. Hopefully, that’s not the guy that will show up, but that’s the guy you want to be ready for.”

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

Comments

Show Comments

Related News

Demetrious Johnson Reacts to Being Co-Main Event Behind Ferguson vs. Lee at UFC 216 | MMAWeekly.com

  • 18 days ago
  • 123 views

A month ago, Demetrious Johnson was headlining UFC 215 in Canada with the chance to break the all time title defense record in UFC history with his fight against Ray Borg. Unfortunately, Borg fell il read news >>

Claudia Gadelha vs. Jessica Andrade: UFC Japan Joe Rogan Preview | MMAWeekly.com

  • 26 days ago
  • 84 views

Joe Rogan breaks down the exciting co-main event between Claudia Gadelha and Jessica Andrade going down at UFC Fight Night Japan on Friday. read news >>

Jessica Andrade Bloodies and Batters Claudia Gadelha in Co-Main Event at UFC in Japan | MMAWeekly.com

  • 24 days ago
  • 84 views

Jessica Andrade made a very strong statement with her win on Friday night as she bloodied and battered former title contender Claudia Gadelha en route to a lopsided decision in the co-main event at U read news >>

Watch Ovince Saint Preux KO Patrick Cummins (UFC Japan Free Fight) | MMAWeekly.com

  • 24 days ago
  • 27 views

Ovince Saint Preux improved his record in the UFC to 6-1 after his victory over Patrick Cummins at Fight Night Newark in 2015. read news >>

Does the UFC have a real future in China?

  • 24 days ago
  • 7 views

After testing the waters with a trio of events in Macau, the UFC soon makes its debut in Mainland China. Is there a future there, though?Filed under: News, UFC, Videos read news >>

Cris Cyborg Struts Her Muay Thai Ring Card Girl Stuff (Video) | MMAWeekly.com

  • 24 days ago
  • 11 views

UFC featherweight champion Cris Cyborg couldn't wait to get back in the ring, so she's taken up a position as a ring card girl. read news >>

Charles Rosa 'heartbroken' after Mizuto Hirota pulled from UFC-Japan for safety reasons

  • 24 days ago
  • 8 views

Charles Rosa is taking the high road in response to opponent Mizuto Hirota being pulled from UFC Fight Night 117.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

UFC Fight Night 117 results: Daichi Abe impresses, hands Hyun Gyu Lim third straight loss

  • 24 days ago
  • 9 views

Thanks to a late rally in the third with a big knockdown, Daichi Abe stayed perfect and won his UFC debut against Hyun Gyu Lim.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

Dachi Abe Survives All-Out War at UFC Japan (Fight Highlights) | MMAWeekly.com

  • 24 days ago
  • 16 views

Check out highlights from Dachi Abe's miraculous comeback victory over Hyun Gyu Lim at UFC Fight Night 117 on Friday in Japan. read news >>

UFC Fight Night 117 results: Shinsho Anzai returns from 2-year layoff, outpoints Luke Jumeau

  • 24 days ago
  • 7 views

Shinsho Anzai came back after two years away from the sport to take a unanimous decision from Luke Jumeau at UFC Fight Night 117 in Japan.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>