The UFC returns to Australia in early December with a card headlined by Mark Hunt and Bigfoot Silva. The rest of the card features alot of matches worth looking at, including the Lightheavyweightfeatures of James Te Huna versus Mauricio Rua and Anthony Perosh taking on Ryan Bader.
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The Lightheavyweight division is at the forefront on the undercard, as James Te Huna gets a major step up fight against ‘Shogun’ Rua and local fighter Anthony Perosh faces long time main card fighter Ryan Bader.
The Te Huna-Rua bout is a pick ‘em fight. Te Huna was riding a strong 4 fight winning streak until running into Glover Teixeira in his last outing. Te Huna needs a win to conitnue the momentum he had built, and Rua is tailor made. In Teixeira, he failed at beating a top name, but Teixeira was a rising talent. Rua is at the tail end of his career and has taken two losses in a row. Rua’s last outing was a humiliating loss to nemesis Chael Sonnen, and he is on the verge of potentially being cut.
Ryan Bader is also in a similar spot. Bader has been given several opportunities to beat a top opponent and he has come up short. He is in need of a win after getting taken out by Glover Teixeira in his last outing, and Perosh is not the same level of the guys he has been fighting. Look for Bader to get out with a win, and he will probably be favored when the line hits the books.
Of all the Lightheavyweights fighters on the card, the one with the most to gain is Te Huna. A win over Rua, despite most observers understanding Rua is beyond his prime, will give him a big name on his resume and set him up for a bigger fight down the line.
Rua is definitely on the brink of being cut. The fact is, due to his resume and reputation he is on the higher end of the payscale, and will wind up facing up and comers more and more as his skills deteriorate. If he shows little in this fight, th emost merciful out for Rua may be a cut from the UFC roster.