Rich Franklin To Face Antonio Rogerio Nogueira At UFC 133Former UFC Middleweight Champion Rich “Ace” Franklin will continue his campaign in the light heavyweight division when he faces Antonio Rogerio “Minotoro” Nogueira at UFC 133 on August 6th. The fight was announced today and is expected to take place in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Both Franklin and Nogueira are coming off of Unanimous Decision setbacks in their most recent bouts, as Franklin came up short against Forrest Griffin at UFC 126 while Nogueira was upset by Phil “Mr. Wonderful” Davis at UFC Fight Night 24. Both need big wins in order to get back in title contention.

Franklin (28-6-0, 1 NC) has spent much of the last three years competing at weights above 185 pounds after he was unable to regain the UFC Middleweight Championship from Anderson “The Spider” Silva in the pair’s 2007 rematch. He is 4-3 since that time, but has posted wins in just two of his last three bouts. Against Griffin, Franklin was taken down and controlled from the top for much of the opening round and was unable to recover on the scorecards. Now facing a crossroads, Franklin will need to put together a string of victories if he is to climb within reach of the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship, and a loss to Nogueira would be a major blow to Franklin’s career.

Nogueira (19-5-0) made his long-awaited Octagon debut at UFC 106 and stopped Luiz “Banha” Cane in impressive fashion, but he has struggled since. Though he was awarded a Split Decision victory against Jason “The Hitman” Brilz at UFC 114, most observers felt that Brilz had deserved the win. Nogueira is now coming off of back-to-back decision losses to Ryan “Darth” Bader and the aforementioned Davis, and finds himself slipping further and further away from a shot at the 205-pound crown. Should he be able to get past Franklin, Nogueira will be back on the winning track, but he will likely need many more wins if he is to return to top contender status in the ultra-competitive division.

With both fighters possessing solid power in their punches, Nogueira’s jiu-jitsu skills may prove to be the difference maker if Franklin is not able to keep the fight on the feet. However, should Franklin opt to use his wrestling to take Nogueira down, he may be able to replicate Davis’s success from the top if he can avoid Nogueira’s submission game from his back.

UFC 133 is targeted for August 6th at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.


UFC 133 Fight Card (to date; subject to change):

– Vitor “The Phenom” Belfort vs Yoshihiro Akiyama
– Rich “Ace” Franklin vs Antonio Rogerio “Minotoro” Nogueira
– Jorge “El Conquistador” Rivera vs Alessio “Legionarius” Sakara
– Michael “Mayday” McDonald vs Nick Pace
– Brian “Bad Boy” Ebersole vs Dennis “Superman” Hallman
– Rafael “Sapo” Natal vs Riki Fukuda



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