Before Mauricio 'Shogun' Rua's fight last Saturday night vs. Chael Sonnen, the elder Rua brother Murilo 'Ninja' predicted a rout for his sibling.
"My brother will knock him out on the first round," said Ninja. "Sonnen will try to take him down and my brother will finish him early. Sonnen’s chance is basically score points on the ground and pound, but my brother is also dangerous off his back. It’s definitely not a good match-up for Sonnen. Sonnen isn’t that good on the ground. He has a good wrestling, but we can’t compare him to my brother on striking and ground abilities. My brother is the favorite, he has more weapons to win."
Thus few were likely more stunned when Sonnen pulled Guard and tapped out Shogun with a submission. It was his first back to back loss ever, his first loss via sub since 2007, and dropped him to a losing 5-6 in the UFC.
In an interview with MMAFighting, Ninja discussed the loss.
"I was surprised," said Ninja. "In my opinion, Mauricio played the wrong game. He should’ve moved more to avoid the takedowns. Fighting on half guard against a wrestler isn’t a good strategy. He should have brought Chael to his guard when he got taken down, tried to sweep him or land some punches. But Sonnen got his neck, unfortunately."
"My brother needs someone, he needs a head coach who can listen to. I always told him the truth no matter what, but I had issues with trainers from his camp. Maybe in the future I’ll work with him again, who knows. I’ll talk to him when he returns to Curitiba."
"He has a lot of shady persons around him, people trying to take advantage of him. People from his camp said I wasn’t good for Mauricio because I made him nervous when I was on his corner, and he listened to that, so I decided to leave. If something is wrong I would point it out, I wouldn’t just lie to please him."
"I don’t know what he’s thinking for his future, I’ll talk to him when he gets back home."
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