Mixed martial arts is a sport that requires incredible dedication to one's craft along with the motivation to become better each day. Talent was never a question for Mauricio "Shogun" Rua, but his motivation in the gym has come under fire in recent years.
"I have always been with great coaches, but I lacked motivation," Rua said.
"With the training here in São Paulo, my motivation raised again because I'm just another fighter," Rua said. "In Curitiba, the coaches were hired by me and they were focusing only on me. Now, here in São Paulo, I have good athletes that help me like Demian Maia and Daniel Sarafian."
This sounds a lot like the Brock Lesnar situation when the former UFC heavyweight champ was competing in MMA. Lesnar used the money he'd earned from competing in the WWE to amass his own training facility, filled with handpicked coaches. Training with Lesnar was also on an "invite-only" type of basis.
It's not that the coaches Lesnar had were awful, his Brazilian jiu-jitsu coach Rodrigo "Comprido" Medeiros was a solid coach. It's that Lesnar was the boss in the building, as his name was on the paychecks.
Heading to São Paulo has worked wonders for Rua, as he not only looked in vintage form by knocking out James Te Huna in his last fight, but he also looked to be in the best shape of is life. Or at least as far back as I can remember.
Rua's hoping the results continue to show in his rematch with Dan Henderson in the main event of the upcoming UFC Fight Night 38. The two men will look to recreate the magic of their UFC 139 clash that had many fans proclaiming it to be the best MMA fight they'd ever seen.