Mauricio “Shogun” Rua is preparing to take on fellow light heavyweight Gian Villante in just a few weeks at UFC Fight Night 106. Rua, who has over thirty professional MMA fights to his credit, isn’t thinking about retirement just yet.
“The subject bothers me a little,” Rua told MMA Junkie. “Because I’m experienced – I’ve been fighting for many years – but I’m also a young guy. I’m 35. People stop at 40, 38, 39. Depends. I think every athlete has the liberty to stop whenever they want. People speculate that a lot about me because I’ve had a few losses, but everyone has losses. So if a doctor doesn’t perform a perfect surgery, they need to retire? If a dentist doesn’t perfectly extract a tooth, they need to retire? A businesswoman goes into a meeting and it’s not successful, she needs to retire? If I’m happy to be fighting, and the UFC is happy to have me fighting for them, I don’t know why people are so bothered by it.”
Rua has a goal to achieve this year, which is to fight at least two to three times by the year's end.
“Now I’m fully recovered. My focus for 2017 is for sure to do two or three fights. I think, two at least – that’s my focus for every year. I try to always look after myself. Now I’m 100 percent, thankfully. I had tendinitis on my knee, and that got in the way of training. That’s healed up, and hopefully I won’t have any more injuries this year,” said Rua.
UFC Fight Night 106 takes place on Saturday, March 11 from the Centro de Formacao Olimpica do Nordeste in Forteleza, Brazil with Vitor Belfort ad Kelvin Gastelum headlining.