Mauricio “Shogun” Rua lost his title to 23-year-old dynamo Jon “Bones” Jones this past March in a bout that was rarely competitive.
The young buck took it to the Pride veteran from the first bell, tagging him with a flying knee and using his reach to out-strike him throughout the night. By the third round, the accumulated assault became too much for the former Chute Boxe team member and “Shogun” crumbled to the mat, defeated via TKO in his first title defense.
Speaking with Sensei Sportv recently (props to Fighter’s Only), Rua went over the loss and detailed what he would do differently in a rematch to secure victory.
“I don’t make excuses for my losses,” said Rua. “Instead, I use them as motivation, as a mistake I made. It’s up to me to bounce back. My biggest goal is to fight for the belt again versus Jon Jones. It’s my great dream.”
At 6 ft. 4 inches tall and with a 84.5 inch reach — the longest in the UFC — Jones presents an incredibly unique and difficult challenge for any fighter; “Shogun” admitted to having struggled with that aspect of his opponent’s game and explained how he would change his strategy in a rematch.
“Jones is a very tall fighter,” he said. “It’s difficult landing a hit on him and to close the distance. He’s a young man who didn’t lose yet, he is well-rounded and very good in wrestling. Next time I have got to try to take him down, work out Muay Thai, close the distance or try to keep him on the ground.”
Rua is next scheduled to face fellow former champ Forrest Griffin this August at UFC 134 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.