Former PRIDE Star Ricardo Arona's UFC Debut Looks Imminent

Jesse MotiffSenior Analyst IJune 1, 2010

Ricardo Arona attended the UFC festivities this weekend with one thing in mind—talk with UFC President Dana White in regards to securing a job with the company.

It appears that the former PRIDE fighter had a productive meeting with White, and Arona may soon have a new home.

Arona talked with after the meeting, and he believes he'll debut with the UFC before the end of 2010.

"[Our meeting] was better than I expected, because (Dana White) is a very busy guy, we’ve been seeing this great event, a great show he is promoting. It was a while since we last spoke and there were some rumors in the internet, some interviews… What really happened was that he said he was really glad to see me here, asked about my last fight, where it was, how it was and I told him and also said I wanted an opportunity to rejoin the event on the end of the year, a chance to be here and he said he wanted me on his event, that I have a space for me here on his event and that he only had to talk to his manager and then we would set things up. He said the doors were opened to me, but he would have to consult first his manager. It was much better than I expected, he was really honest and friendly, so it’s enough for me to come back to the hard trainings with an extra energy... it’s a motivation for all my trainings from today on. That’s what I needed to hear. He said we have to keep in touch, so I just have to follow these steps to come closer to the treasure. First I have to worry about my knee recover and I said to him it would be a good thing for me to do a comeback on the end of the year and he said it’d be ok. He told me to take care of my knee while he consults his manager. He was very friendly and honest and so was I and now what I have to do is to keep in touch with him and I’m much closer than I expected."

Arona has a career record of 14-5, although he has only fought three times since he lost to Wanderlei Silva on New Year's Eve 2005. If his current knee injury can heal properly, he would be a good addition to the light-heavyweight division.

He holds wins over Wanderlei Silva, Dan Henderson, and Alistair Overeem. With the exception of his most recent loss to Sokoudjou, Arona has lost to some of the best fighters in the world. Fedor Emelianenko, Rampage Jackson, Shogun Rua, and Wanderlei Silva have all won fights against The Brazilian Tiger. 

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