Ed Soares, the manager for Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, believes both of his clients will be back inside the Octagon in 2014, with “Big Nog” making it back sooner than his brother.
Rodrigo Nogueira (34-8-1) is coming off a loss to Fabricio Werdum that dropped his UFC mark to 5-4 overall. Rumors that he might face Stefan Struve came about earlier in the year, but Struve has since been sidelined with heart issues.
“Nogueira is getting healthy and we’re going to see him fight in the first half of 2014 for sure,” said Soares, in an interview with MMAjunkie.com.
As for Rogerio Nogueira (21-5), he was announced as the next opponent for Alexander Gustafsson for a March bout. However, before we could get any closer to the fight, “Lil Nog” pulled out, citing lingering back issues.
Soares cleared up what happened with that announced fight, saying, “I think sometimes in the UFC there is a lot of moving parts and they offered the fight to me, but Rogerio was away with his brother in a place where they couldn’t get cell reception. Before I was able to get a hold of them, Dana (White) announced it.”
Nogueira, coming off wins over Tito Ortiz and Rashad Evans, is looking at “fighting in May or June,” Soares said.