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Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Rua to unite with Nova Uniao before Rio

By Gleidson Venga and Colin Foster
Sherdog.com

Mauricio Rua
Mauricio Rua will get a little help from his superstar friends ahead of a rematch with Forrest Griffin.

According to Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, accommodations were one of the major contributing factors in his one-sided title loss to Jon Jones at UFC 128 in March.

A few weeks after the defeat, the 29-year-old Brazilian flew to the U.S. to rejoin his longtime mentor, Rafael Cordeiro, at Kings MMA in Huntington Beach, Calif. Now, as he approaches one of the most crucial fights of his career, Rua is eying another change in locale.

Fifteen days before his Aug. 27 rematch with Forrest Griffin at UFC 134 in Rio de Janeiro, Shogun and Cordeiro will head to Brazil for a two-week adjustment period. There, Rua will close out his training camp at Rio’s Nova Uniao academy under the command of Andre Pederneiras.

The former UFC light heavyweight champ will arrive in his home country Aug. 13, alongside Cordeiro, a wrestling coach and Renato “Babalu” Sobral, the first man to defeat Rua and now his corner man. The crew will first train in Rua and Cordeiro’s home of Curitiba, Parana, before wrapping up in Rio.

“We decided to make the final stage of training in Rio de Janeiro, and I really wanted it to be at master Pederneiras’ gym,” Cordeiro told Sherdog.com on Monday. “We’re always looking for good vibrations, and I’m sure that Nova Uniao, one of the greatest centers of excellence in MMA, is the right place. I will be honored to have [Shogun] training with ‘Dede’ Pederneiras.”

Pederneiras confirmed the plan and expressed his excitement at welcoming the former champ.

“We just have to schedule a good time for them,” Pederneiras told Sherdog.com. “It will be an honor for me and for my students to have one of the best coaches in the world and one of the greatest champions.”