Former UFC light heavyweight champion Mauricio “Shogun” Rua had a simple response when he was asked about his recent up-and-down ways inside the Octagon in terms of wins and losses Thursday.

“Part of that is I am always fighting the best in the world,” said Rua, who will meet Chael Sonnen Saturday night in the main event of UFC Fight Night 26. “I always fight and face tough guys.”

Rua(21-7) is 5-4 in his last nine fights overall, defeating Lyoto Machida, Chuck Liddell, Forrest Griffin, Brandon Vera and Mark Coleman. He has lost to Alexander Gustafsson, Dan Henderson, Jon Jones and Machida; those are some of the elite fighters at 205 pounds.

“I train to do my best, I train to do the victory,” Rua said. “I am still doing everything I was able to do at the start (of my career). The spark grows a lot. My main goal is to get back to the belt, a title shot; this victory over Sonnen will be the first step.”

Rua has competed in MMA since 2002, spanning several countries and promotions.