Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira is a former world champion, having stepped inside the cage with some of the biggest heavyweights in the world.
Saturday night, for only the second time in his pro career, Nogueira will be fighting in Brazil. “Minotauro” faces Dave Herman in the co-main event of UFC 153 from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
“Here in Brazil, we have a lot of support. It is my hometown. My gym is one mile from the arena, so I love to fight here,” said Nogueira, during the weigh-in show on Fuel TV. I love the crowd in the UFC and it’s amazing to fight in Vegas, but here, I don’t take it as pressure. I take it as support.”
Nogueira will be competing for the first time since 2011 when he suffered a nasty arm injury in a loss to Frank Mir. He was slated to return vs. Cheick Kongo, but his arm had not healed properly.
“I am in good shape,” Nogueira said. “I got one month and a week notice for this fight. I got stronger, my arm is not painful, I got faster; I’ll be in shape and I’ll throw a good show.”
Photo credit: Daniel Herbertson/Sherdog