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Sunday, Aug 25, 2002

Heating Up For Shockwave:the Relentless Champion Takes His Magic To Japan For The 2nd Time In August!


By Eduardo Alonso

Heating up for Shockwave:
The Relentless Champion Takes His Magic to Japan for the 2nd time in August!


NHB fans rarely seem to agree in any subject, with different fans always defending different fighters from all corners of the World. However, if there’s any fighter who is close to a unanimity status in our sport this guy is Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, better known as Minotauro. A true champion, Nogueira has been facing all comers in his division, and has wins over the likes of Mark Coleman, Heath Herring, Enson Inoue and most recently Sanae Kikuta, just to name a few. Not only the PRIDE heavyweight champion has all those wins in his record but he won most of them by submission, showing probably a never seen before dominance in the heavyweight division.
Minotauro
Looking to add another impressive accomplishment to his already successful career, Minotauro is about to compete in what promises to be the biggest MMA event ever against a man most fighters are fearing right now, the monster who attends by the name of Bob Sapp! Not only that, but this will be the second time Rodrigo Minotauro Nogueira steps in the ring in less than a month, showing how much he loves to compete, and most of all showing his is a man of his word. Just one day before he left for Japan, Minotauro spoke with FCF about his last fight against Kikuta, and his upcoming challenge against Sapp and more. As the heath is already extremely high for Shockwave, Full Contact Fighter engages the Champion for yet another challenge…

FCF:   You fought recently at UFO, beating Sanae Kikuta by knockout. Did the fight go how you expected? What did you think of your performance?
ARN:   I liked my performance because I could change my strategy during the fight. I went there looking to do more of a ground game with him, well, I went to fight on the ground and standing because it was an NHB fight, not a Jiu Jitsu fight, but I was looking for a ground fight against him. However he was not allowing a lot of positions on the ground, cause he has a very stalled game. He positions himself very well and he defends the positions very well too. I tried to get him on a triangle but he stood up, I tried to get him on a footlock but he escaped well, and he was fighting very conservative inside my guard. He wasn’t trying to pass my guard and wasn’t moving a lot. So I realized there that he would try to stall the fight and take it to a judges’ decision, and I changed my strategy. I told him to get up, I got a bit nervous and wanted to end the fight quickly. I got impatient. In all of my fights I get a bit impatient if the fight starts to look like it’ll go for a judges’ decision, and I start to want to finish it quickly.

FCF:   Did he frustrate you on the ground in the first round, so you came for the second round looking to trade strikes standing up?
ARN:   For sure. He was stalling a bit, and if he played more openly in the ground I could’ve played more of a ground game with him. But since he got up and risked kicking myself, I guess he wanted to trade strikes. He left his guard open, and this is a position that I train a lot so you go and figure it out [Laughs]

FCF:   There was a big controversy regarding your participation at UFO. When you finally got to Japan, how were things with PRIDE regarding your participation in UFO? Was there a lot of resistance to allow you to fight in it?
ARN:   Before I went to Japan there was some resistance from PRIDE, because they feared I would fight in UFO and wouldn’t fight at PRIDE Shockwave now. Since Shockwave is a joint venture with K1, PRIDE would have to get some fighters on the show, and since I’m their Heavyweight champion and they are doing a huge event on a 100,000 spectators stadium, therefore they need big names to attract the public, there was a pressure for me to fight in this event. But I never said "no" to PRIDE. Before I fought in UFO I gathered with the PRIDE representatives, we had a meeting before the fight, and they were afraid their champion could lose to Kikuta in another event, who is a good fighter but not a champion yet. So we had this meeting two days before my fight, we talked and I guaranteed them that I would fight at Shockwave so they didn’t oppose to my fight at UFO. I gave them my word that I would fight in both events, and that I would win in UFO, since they were afraid I wasn’t going to fight in great physical conditions and could lose to Kikuta because of it.


Click here to continue the interview



Minotauro

After drawing a near-capacity crowd on Saturday, August 17th, the 2002 K-1 World Grand Prix Semifinals will be made available to 84 million homes for 90 minutes on ESPN2 this Tuesday, August 27th at 10:30 pm EST (7:30PM PST).

From RITC Writer/Statistician John Petrilli:


RITC 38 – "Let’s Roll"
Riggs vs Pardo (UFC Veteran)
Dewees vs Ritch (Pride Veteran)


In one Main Event, Joseph Riggs will face Joe Pardo. Joseph Riggs is a 19 year old Wrestler/Boxer. He’s a two-time State Wrestling Champion and an ex-Arizona Golden Gloves Champion. Riggs is currently ranked #1 in the RITC Heavyweight Division. Joe Pardo is a UFC veteran. He’s a jiu-jitsu specialist that once trained with the Gracie’s. He’s traveling to Arizona from California to challenge the #1 ranked RITC Heavyweight. Pardo’s teammate and Pride veteran John Marsh will accompany Joe to Arizona to serve as his corner man. Marsh has fought MMA notables Ricco Rodriquez, Josh Barnett, Vladimir Matyushenko and Jerry Horn.

Two of Arizona’s most active fighters will be featured in the other Main Event for RITC 38. Edwin Dewees, in just over 2 years, has posted a 22 – 4 record in RITC bouts. Shannon "The Cannon" Ritch had his 91st career fight at the K-1 event held at the Bellagio hotel in Las Vegas on August 17th. Shannon is the most active MMA fighter in the world. He has fought in Japan, Holland, Burma, Mexico, Canada, England and of course the United States. He is a veteran of Pride (where he faced Kazushi Sakuraba), K-1 (where he faced Frank Shamrock), KOTC, ISCF, and SuperBrawl.

These intriguing fights along with a strong supporting card will make for another exciting evening of RITC fights. We’re going to work hard on the supporting card right up until fight time to have the best available action for our loyal RITC fans.

Double Main Event:

Joseph Riggs vs Joe Pardo

Edwin Dewees vs Shannon Ritch

There will be 12 fights (the Arizona Commission Limit).

Fight Card subject to change.

Celebrity Theatre, Phoenix, Arizona
Saturday, September 7, 2002
Doors Open: 6 PM, Fight Time: 8 PM
General Admission Tickets still only $20!!!
Tickets $20 (rows 14-25), $30 (rows 4-13) and $40 (rows 1-3)
Tickets for RITC available at the Celebrity Theatre Box Office (602-267-1600) or at Ticketmaster (480-784-4444).
Please visit www.rageinthecage.com or call 480-446-8127 for more information.

posted by Full Contact Fighter @ 8:00 pm
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