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Mauricio “Shogun” Rua: I’d fight Anderson Silva; we were never friends

UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva has flirted with the idea of challenging for the light-heavyweight title for some time now, but as long as his good friend Lyoto Machida wore the belt there was little chance of that taking place.

Fortunately, the landscape has changed.

With Mauricio “Shogun” Rua now sitting firmly at the top of the 205 lb. weight class after having knocked the previously undefeated Machida silly at UFC 113, it now appears as though a battle between UFC’s light-heavyweight and middleweight champions is becoming a very realistic possibility.

“We’ve always had a good relationship, but we were never close,” said Shogun in regards to Silva during a recent conversation with “I’ve always admired Anderson on the gym, but we were never friends… If UFC wanted to, I’d confront Anderson.

“Anderson is a very good guy, had a good technique and conditioning, he’s one of the three best pound for pound, but I’m used to challenges. I’d be a tough fight, but I like tough challenges.”

Rua currently has to focus on rehabilitating from knee surgery that could potentially keep him out of action through October. Once the knee is properly healed Shogun is expected to face off with Rashad Evans for the light-heavyweight title.

Silva is currently deep in training for his UFC 117 middleweight title defense against Chael Sonnen in early August.

A victory by both champions in their next outings could provide all of the ingredients for a championship showdown in the near future.

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