If it turns out to be Shogun Rua’s final fight, it’s not the match-up fans were looking for.
Former UFC light heavyweight champion Mauricio “Shogun” Rua has been booked opposite Dana White’s Contender Series alum Ihor Potieria at UFC 283 in January. News of the match-up was first reported by Alex Behunin.
Rua (27-13-1) has suggested for some time that his retirement was imminent, saying in 2020 that he would call it a career after two or three more fights. Last year, UFC President Dana White claimed the Brazilian legend had hung up the gloves, but Shogun returned at UFC 274, losing a close split decision opposite Ovince Saint Pruex.
Close though the fight was, the setback was the second straight loss for the 40-year old, who will turn 41 next month.
Rua remains one of the last legends of his era, having defeated the likes of Rampage Jackson, Alistair Overeem, Kevin Randleman, Akihiro Gono, Little Nog, and others under the PRIDE banner. In the UFC, he defeated Mark Coleman, Chuck Liddell, and in 2010 dethroned Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida to claim the promotion’s light heavyweight title.
He would lose the belt in his very next fight to a young upstart by the name of Jon Jones.
In terms of wins and losses, his latter career with the UFC was his most fruitful, as Shogun went 5-1-1 from 2015 to 2020, until hitting his recent two-fight skid.
Potieria won his way into the UFC on the 2021 edition of the Contender Series. He lost his promotional debut, however, against Nicolae Negumereanu this past July.
UFC 283 takes place on January 21, 2023 at the Jeunesse Arena in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The event is the promotion’s first in the South American nation since prior to the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. The following fights have been reported for the event:
- Deiveson Figueiredo (c) vs. Brandon Moreno (ic) – for the UFC flyweight championship / title unification bout
- Mounir Lazzez vs. Gabriel Bonfim
- Josiane Nunes vs. Zarah Fairn Dos Santos
- Gregory Rodrigues vs. Brad Tavares
- Maurício Rua vs. Ihor Potieria