Breaking: Shogun (@ShogunRua) vs. Lil Nog (@Minotauromma) 3 booked to UFC 250 on May 9 in São Paulo, Brazil, per UFC president Dana White (@danawhite). The trilogy will take place 15 years after the original. pic.twitter.com/dTgO1g3gHk— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) February 20, 2020
A rare trilogy bout between two legends in the sport has been scheduled for the Ultimate Fighting Championship's event in Brazil this May.
According to ESPN on Thursday, UFC President Dana White announced that Mauricio Rua (26-11-1) will square off against Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (23-9) for the third time at UFC 250. The event will take place on May 19 at the Ibirapuera Gymnasium in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and a headliner has not yet been scheduled for the card.
The two first meeting in 2005 and then later in 2015, "Shogun" has emerged victorious after both thrilling encounters by unanimous verdict. Their trilogy where one fighter has won the first two matchups a rare occurrence, it will join classics like Wanderlei Silva vs. Quinton Jackson -- before they met a fourth time in Bellator MMA -- Frankie Edgar vs. B.J. Penn and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira vs. Heath Herring.
The first collision was declared the Sherdog.com 2005 "Fight of the Year" in a back-and-forth battle that saw a bit of everything. The second did not disappoint, and although it did not earn "Fight of the Year" distinction in 2015, their UFC 190 co-headliner did win "Fight of the Night" from the UFC that night and each man took home an additional $50,000.
The longtime Pride Fighting Championships veteran, Rua has seen greater success of late than he has in years, dropping only one bout among his last six. Most recently, he fought to a draw against Paul Craig, and in doing so became the first fighter to reach the scorecards against Craig. Prior to that draw, he handed Tyson Pedro his first career knockout loss at UFC Fight Night 142 in 2018. The lone defeat for “Shogun” dating back to 2014 came against future title challenger Anthony Smith, who dispatched the former champ in less than 90 seconds with a vicious elbow.
Nogueira has alternated victories and defeats dating back to his second loss to Rua in 2015. He has surrounded knockout wins over Patrick Cummins and Sam Alvey with stoppage losses to Ryan Spann and Ryan Bader in that stretch. Each of the last five outings for Nogueira have taken place in Brazil, including two of his last three in the city of Sao Paulo. A fellow vet of Pride FC, to his credit Nogueira posts wins over Alistair Overeem, Dan Henderson and Kazushi Sakuraba while competing under the Pride FC banner.