On this past weekend’s UFC 274 main card, “Shogun” ran it back with Ovince Saint Preux. When the pair first met at UFC Fight Night 56 back in 2014, the Brazilian was viciously knocked out in just 34 seconds. Given his understandable decline at the age of 40, as well as the damage he’s taken across two decades of fighting, many fans feared for a similar fate in the rematch.
Fortunately, or unfortunately for those wanting more action, the pair went the full 15-minute distance in a pretty forgettable fight, with “OSP” leaving Phoenix with a second victory over “Shogun” on his record, this time via split decision.
Despite the defeat, White said that the former light heavyweight titleholder will be granted his wish to fight out his contract in the promotion.
During his appearance at the UFC 274 post-fight press conference, the UFC chief noted that Rua was by no means convincingly beaten, nor did he give any indication that he should be prevented from competing one last time.
“’Shogun’ is a legend, not just here but in the sport: Pride, here, and it’s not like ‘Shogun’ went out there tonight and looked like, ‘Oh my God, this guy can’t even compete in the sport anymore.’ He’s got one more fight left on his contract. So I’ll give it to him, and let him make that money, and go out the way he wants to,” said White.
Given the decision to match “Shogun” with another veteran of the sport this past weekend, it stands to reason that the UFC will follow a similar route for the Brazilian’s final fight.
Although given how the rematch with “OSP” went, perhaps it won’t be on a pay-per-view main card…
Who should Maurício “Shogun” Rua share the Octagon with for his final contracted fight?