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

UFC Performance Institute Hopes to Minimize Injuries, Advance Training Techniques | MMAWeekly.com

  • 28 days ago
  • 10 views

UFC recently unveiled irs newly constructed Performance Institute in Las Vegas. The enormous, 30,000 square foot facility was built to assist fighters. read news >>

UFC on FOX 23 results: Alexandre Pantoja takes split from 'TUF 24' castmate Eric Shelton

  • 26 days ago
  • 8 views

DENVER – A solid first two rounds for Alexandre Pantoja, with close submission attempts in each, was enough to squeak past a disappointed Eric Shelton. Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

Nate Diaz Wants to Box Because UFC Put Him on the Shelf | MMAWeekly.com

  • 29 days ago
  • 435 views

Nate Diaz recently applied for a boxing license because he is "being put on the shelf" by the UFC. read news >>

Daniel Cormier vs. Anthony Johnson 2 Announced for UFC 210: Details, Reaction

  • 29 days ago
  • 6 views

The UFC announced Wednesday that Daniel Cormier and Anthony Johnson will meet in a rematch of their May 2015 clash at UFC 210 in Buffalo, New York, on April 8. Cormier (18-1) secured a victory via su read news >>

Valentina Shevchenko Earns Bonus for Submitting Julianna Pena (UFC Denver Fighter Bonuses) | MMAWeekly.com

  • 25 days ago
  • 9 views

The Ultimate Fighting Championship announced the fighter bonuses stemming from Saturday's UFC Denver during the post-fight press conference at the Pepsi Center. read news >>

After UFC-debut win, 'TUF 24' semifinalist Alexandre Pantoja ready for top-10 opponent like Benavidez

  • 24 days ago
  • 7 views

DENVER – After getting the split-call nod over “TUF 24” castmate Eric Shelton at UFC on FOX 23, Alexandre Pantoja said his experience has earned him a “good and experienced” opponent like, say, forme read news >>

UFC on Fox 23: Gate and Attendance Numbers from Denver | MMAWeekly.com

  • 25 days ago
  • 10 views

UFC president Dana White announced the attendance and gate numbes stemming from UFC on Fox 23 during the event's post-fight press conference in Denver. read news >>

Ex-champ Fabricio Werdum talks Dos Santos, title shot hopes and social media accusations

  • 21 days ago
  • 11 views

Former UFC heavyweight champ Fabricio Werdum still eyes a rematch against current titleholder Stipe Miocic, but welcomes scrap with fellow ex-champ and countryman Junior Dos Santos for the interim ti read news >>

UFC President Dana White on 'TUF 8' winner: 'Bellator is a good place for Ryan Bader'

  • 20 days ago
  • 241 views

HOUSTON – The most tenured light heavyweight fighter in UFC history officially will be taking his talents elsewhere. Filed under: Bellator, News, UFC read news >>

'The Korean Zombie' Earns Bonus In Octagon Return (UFC Houston Fighter Bonuses) | MMAWeekly.com

  • 18 days ago
  • 5 views

The Ultimate Fighting Championship announced the fighter bonuses stemming from Saturday's UFC Houston following the event at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. read news >>