UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Mauricio “Shogun” Rua compares teammates Jon Jones and Rashad Evans.
Rua was originally scheduled to face Evans at UFC 128 on March 19, but a knee injury forced Evans out of the title bout.
The fight was offered to Jones in the Octagon following his UFC 126 submission win over Ryan Bader, and the 23-year old quickly accepted to fill in for his training partner.
“I think both fighters have some similarities in their games because both are good strikers and good wrestlers and they like to fight in a ground and pound style,” said Rua on Wednesday.
Questioned if Jones is a tougher match up than Evans, “Shogun” replied, “Regarding the fight being tougher or not, I don’t think so because Rashad is a great fighter as is Jon Jones.
“They’re great opponents, however, I think Rashad is a guy that likes to control the fight a little more, maybe stall a little bit and play more safe whereas Jon Jones is a more exciting fighter and looks for the finishes. He brings a hard fight and that’s the kind of fights everyone likes, so I’m excited.”
“UFC 128: Shogun vs. Jones” will mark Rua’s first title defense. He won the belt by knocking out Lyoto Machida at UFC 113 in May of 2010.
UFC 128 takes place at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J. on Saturday and is headlined by the light heavyweight title bout between Rua and Jones.