Shogun vs. Vera win gets title shot, Jon Jones baffled

by Dann Stupp, Steven Marrocco | source:

During a UFC on FOX 4 call held today, the light heavyweight title path for several fighters became clearer.

Despite both fighters having already suffered losses to champion Jon Jones – and despite the competitors owning a combined 3-5 record (with one no-contest) in their past nine fights – the winner of Saturday's UFC on FOX 4 headliner, Mauricio "Shogun" Rua vs. Brandon Vera, will get a shot at the belt.

UFC president Dana White today confirmed the plans.

"Yes," White said when asked about the title stakes.

"'Shogun' Rua just came off a 'Fight of the Year' last year," said White referring to the Henderson fight. "He's probably one of the best fighters of the last decade. Think about it. This guy knocked out 'Rampage', knocked out Chuck Liddell, knocked out Mark Coleman, knocked out Lyoto Machida, knocked out Forrest Griffin, knocked out Alistair Overeem twice, submitted Kevin Randleman. A win puts him right back in position, and then he's probably the No. 2 guy in the world."

As for Vera, who hasn't won back-to-back fights in three years, he understands it's icing on the cake.

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Meanwhile, mega manager Ed Soares hopes to match Machida and Shogun as head coaches on TUF Brazil, assuming both win at UFC on FOX 4. TUF Brazil starts filming in January of 2013.

"If Lyoto wins and 'Shogun' wins, maybe make them the coaches of the next Brazilian 'TUF,' and have them fight the rubber match," Soares told

"Lorenzo mentioned that 'Shogun' has mentioned something to him about possibly doing that. I think it's a great idea. I think 'Shogun' is a huge name and a former champion, and so is Lyoto. They have a history. It's 1-1."

The inaugural season of "The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil" was No. 1 in its Sunday timeslot, and averaged 10 million viewers per week.

"When you start looking at the data, you could almost lump the U.S., Canada and the U.K. together, and it wouldn't be as many fans as there are here in Brazil," UFC executive Marshall Zelaznik said.

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Ex-Champion Lyoto Machida is prepared to roll with what comes.

"Really, anything can happen," Machida said. "Obviously, I'm trying to train as hard as I can and put on a good fight, and I try to trace a way back to the title. But that's not really what I'm focused on right now."

"I think the UFC always positions themselves correctly, and this fight could be a great fight this weekend. 'Shogun' was obviously a champion, and Brandon Vera has fought in two weight classes – he's a great fighter, as well. This fight ... could be deserving of a title shot."

And Machida would be happy to roll into a As to a TUF Brazil coaching slot.

"I think it would be a great opportunity for the both of us," Machida said. "I would love to face 'Shogun' again, and I think he probably feels the same way. It's one victory to each of us right now, and I think it would definitely put us in a good position for title contention."

"We learn a lot from our losses, and I've learned a lot in the last few years with these losses. But I'm always looking for the best training I can get and training as correctly as I think I can. I want to come out there and surprise everyone and give a show."

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And Jon Jones? He does not know what to make of it.

The winner of Shogun vs. Vera is guaranteed #1 contender at 205.

Jon Bones @JonnyBones
Scratching my head

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tags: UFC on FOX 4   Brandon Vera (detail)  Mauricio Rua   Shogun   Lyoto Machida (detail)  Ed Soares   


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Recent Comments »

Jay C site profile image  

7/31/12 7:33 AM by Jay C

Is it too late to switch Vera with Machida?

ssj site profile image  

7/31/12 1:56 AM by ssj

Shogun wasn't 100% for the first fight, he will just walk through Jones hits then KO himShogun always wins his rematches ..

2ommata site profile image  

7/31/12 1:38 AM by 2ommata

dog dana white is the PROMOTER!hes not the matchmaker, he doesnt make all of the decisions, but he PROMOTES the fights DAWG

NONURINAUMANA site profile image  

7/31/12 12:44 AM by NONURINAUMANA

No disrespect but ROFLMAO that Vera gets a title shot. Doubt he gets a title shot in the UFC ever in future. BLAF is so full of BS sometimes. Fans aren't stupid and he needs to try harder when hyping fights because it's the same old see-through routine time and time again. Yes it's a cynical view but fans have every reason to be cynical with Vera popping up from nowhere to fight a contender bout. It's full retard. Chime in here BLAF if you're lurking.

MPA2000 site profile image  

7/31/12 12:15 AM by MPA2000

Poor choice of people to fight for the title. Both were demolished by the champ with little effort the last time.Why is Vera getting Rua, it should be Rampage. He has always wanted to revenge his loss against Rua way back in PRIDE. Coincidentally I find it strangely funny that White speaks about Rua knocking out Rampage as if it just happened recently. It was seven years ago!

RandyDarsh126 site profile image  

7/31/12 12:07 AM by RandyDarsh126

lol wtf theres already a randy darsh

RandyDarsh site profile image  

7/31/12 12:06 AM by RandyDarsh

the brandon vera era ROLLS right off the tongue

Fabefromfort site profile image  

7/30/12 11:33 PM by Fabefromfort

I'm sure Jones ain't afraid of anyone, but, a fit Shogun Rua does make for an uncomfortable fight next time around. Especially, as Rua sez, there is more tape, and time to study Jones. Noone likes how Rua comes back at people once he has fought them a first time. Rua comes back hard,fast, and with fire in his eyes. Look for a very good fight next time out with Rua-Jones. It'll be an awesome humdinger that will test Jones' resilience. I think he gets outlasted byf the tough Rua.

SickEyeDiaz site profile image  

7/30/12 10:37 PM by SickEyeDiaz

Who gives a shit? Jones seems content with fighting every few months and obviously isn't looking to move to HW anytime soon, so why not just keep throwing opponents at him? There's plenty of time for every rematch imaginable as well as new contenders like Gustafson. As long as Jones chooses to sit on top of a shallow division that he's already pretty much destroyed already, we're gonna get rematches and other opponents that the ultra-picky UG posters don't feel are worthy. He destroyed Shogun just as much as he did Vera but nobody's in an uproar about a possible Shogun rematch.You guys will bitch no matter who the opponent is. "This person doesn't deserve it. That person doesn't deserve it. This person deserves it even less than that person, blah blah blah."

Bill Pharoni site profile image  

7/30/12 10:09 PM by Bill Pharoni

They're really banking on Shogun winning here. Vera brings nothing to the table as a challenger for Jones.