UFC Fight Night Shogun vs. Sonnen fight card primer: Shogun Rua vs. Chael Sonnen

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Bloody Elbow presents their UFC Fight Night: Shogun vs. Sonnen fight card primer, previewing all the action at this weekend's UFC Fight Night live on Fox Sports 1. Here, we look at the main event: Mauricio Shogun Rua vs. Chael Sonnen.

In the main event at UFC Fight Night: Shogun vs. Sonnen, former UFC Light Heavyweight champion Mauricio Rua (21-7 MMA; 5-5 UFC) faces Chael Sonnen (27-13-1 MMA; 6-6 UFC) in a Light Heavyweight fight. The official UFC rankings have Shogun as the #8 contender at Light Heavyweight; Sonnen is unranked in the division, but still holds the #9 spot at Middleweight. UFC Fight Night: Shogun vs. Sonnen airs live on Fox Sports 1 this Saturday, August 17, with the main card starting at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT.

There are two ways you could look at this fight.. If you're a glass half empty kind of fan, you could see it as two guys outside of title contention, both somewhat broken down, in a fight with no real relevance. Me? I see it as an interesting style clash between two fighters who I more often than not enjoy watching fight. This is a perfectly solid main event, and one I am interested to see play out.

How do these two stack up?

Shogun: 31 years old | 6'1" | 76" reach
Sonnen: 36 years old | 6'1" | 74" reach

What have these two done recently?

Shogun: L - Alexander Gustafsson (UD) | W - Brandon Vera (TKO) | L - Dan Henderson (UD)
Sonnen: L - Jon Jones (TKO) | L - Anderson Silva (TKO) | W - Michael Bisping (UD)

How did these two get here?

Shogun Rua's recent years have been a wild ride. From the #1 Light Heavyweight in the world, to terrible showings against Forrest Griffin and Mark Coleman, to an unexpected UFC world title reign, then back to Earth, it's been a bumpy path for the Chute Boxe great. Clearly, Shogun has slowed down considerably in recent years, as his chronic knee injuries continue to cause him trouble. But he's still a very dangerous fighter, and it's hard to know just what is left in the tank.

More Bloody Elbow coverage of UFC Fight Night: Shogun vs. Sonnen

Chael Sonnen. What is there really to say? After a middling UFC run years ago, Sonnen stepped up his game considerably, first in the WEC, and then in the UFC, coming oh so close to beating Anderson Silva once upon a time. Maybe you're heard Chael mention that fight once or twice. Recent fights have been less kind, as he barely got by Michael Bisping, then was blown out of the water by Silva and Jon Jones. The last time Sonnen looked really good was against Brian Stann at UFC 136. Still, his mouth will keep earning him big fights until he hangs it up.

Why should you care?

I'm not always a fan of the Chael shtick, but I like watching both of these guys fight, and that's enough for me.

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