• UFC news

Shogun preferred to be cut than fight Glover Teixeira

ESPN staff
June 9, 2012
Mauricio Shogun Rua is not Dana White's favourite fighter right now © Getty Images

Mauricio Shogun Rua would rather be cut from the UFC than fight Glover Teixeira, according to president Dana White.

Shogun was left without an opponent when Thiago Silva withdrew from their scheduled UFC 149 bout. Rua has since been handed Brandon Vera as the headliner for UFC on Fox 4.

However, the UFC's first pick for replacement opponent was Teixeira, the lethal Brazilian who has only just entered the UFC. He ambushed Kyle Kingsbury on debut and is expected to trouble the light-heavyweight division's top 10.

White claims Shogun was offered Teixeira but turned him down. The former champ has denied the story, but White's latest quotes are strong in their criticism of Rua.

"He would rather be cut than fight him [Teixeira]," White said at the UFC on FX 3 post-fight press conference.

"No [I'm not OK with him saying that]. But you know what? It's one of those very weird situations to hear one of the top five guys in the world say, 'I'd rather be cut than fight a guy who isn't ranked.'

"The reason they were saying that was, 'Oh, he's not top 10.' But then we offered him Brandon Vera and he took it in two seconds - and Vera isn't top 10 either.

"The reality is, Shogun is a guy whom I respect. The guy's been through a million wars with all the best guys in the world. But for some reason, he does not want to fight this dude Glover. And you know me - if you don't want me to tell the truth, don't say stuff to me on the phone.

"That's exactly what happened. That's exactly the way it went down. And me and Lorenzo [Fertitta] said, 'Look, you can't turn down fights at this level. The money you're making and where you are ranked in the world, you don't turn down fights at this level. We might have to cut you.' He said, 'I'd rather be cut than fight him.'"

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.