If you take a look at most UFC event headliners, they’re usually guys fighting for titles or a spot in the rankings not too far off from that. However, this Saturday’s UFC Fight Night 26 headliner is a bit of an exception considering that both Chael Sonnen and Mauricio Rua are only 2-3 in their last 5 outings – not quite the combined record you’d expect from two very iconic figures on the UFC roster. While their recent performances may not have brought home victories, Sonnen and Rua are still two very exciting fighters who will undoubtedly put on an entertaining performance this Saturday in Boston.
Through several years of attempted rejuvenation, Shogun Rua’s career has never quite reached the pinnacle that many fans may believe he is deserved. When searching for a point to blame, many speculators will often target Rua’s lack of cardio and conditioning to attribute for his poor performances. Unfortunately, gassing out in the second round has been a common habit for Rua as he has experienced extreme fatigue in nearly all of his fights that went past the second round. Fighters who gas out are often heavily criticized by the MMA community, so not only does Rua’s record possibly take a hit, but his overall image gets slapped down further and further towards the Bob Sapp realm.
When you want to talk about controversy and real pot-stirrers, it’s hard to not to put your finger on Chael P. Sonnen. The man who was at one time believed to be the next middleweight champion and ruler of MMA to come has been spun in a down-spiral after failing in his attempts in the cage. Sonnen’s mouth often gives him a little more than he can chew, but that won’t stop him from calling out whoever he needs to remain relevant. Let’s face it, failing 3 times at UFC gold is bad enough, but the way Sonnen hypes himself up to be the next “guy” just adds a little more distaste to it. While Sonnen may be a true fighter who never steps down from a challenge, his habit of failure is slowly costing him his image and could very well continue him toward that Bob Sapp realm I mentioned above.
Now that you’ve heard me tear these two guys apart, let me remind you that they are still very great fighters. Who knows what will happen this Saturday, but we as fans will bare witness to a showdown between two guys who know all about going to war in the cage. Both Sonnen and Shogun are in desperate need of a win to hopefully take one step at clearing their slate and scoring themselves a bit of positive reputation. Ironically, both fighters have experienced major changes in their camp and training preparation, so this is the perfect time for them to rejuvenate. Get excited, because the epic showdown between Sonnen and Shogun will be a desperation-fueled fight that is due to entertain.