Antonio Rogerio “Minotoro” Nogueira (12-3) will make his return to mixed martial arts on Feb. 1 in Canada against Todd Gouwenberg at Hardcore Championship Fighting “Destiny.”
Nogueira was last seen being knocked out by Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou in February at Pride’s final show. He was considered one of the top light heavyweights in the world, but he has fallen on tough times, losing two out of his last three fights.
Gouwenberg (7-2) has fought in the BodogFight promotion as well as TKO.
Nogueira’s career looked promising after scoring wins over quality opponents such as Kazushi Sakuraba, Kazuhiro Nakamura and Dan Henderson. He had been a star in the now defunct Pride Fighting Championship alongside his brother, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira.
Unfortunately, his losses to Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and Sokoudjou, as well as his long layoff, has caused many mixed martial arts fans to write him off as a top ten light heavyweight. All of that can change now that he is refocused and ready to begin his comeback.
Also on the card are Ultimate Fighting Championship veterans John Alessio, Derrick Noble and Solomon Hutcherson as well as Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos and Mike Pyle.
The card is as follows:
Hardcore Championship Fighting
Friday, Feb. 1, 2008
HCF Lightweight Championship
Thomas Schulte vs. Garett Davis
Antonio Rogerio Nogueira vs. Todd Gouwenberg
Gegard Mousasi vs. Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos
John Alessio vs. Derrick Noble
Damir Mirenic vs. Mike Pyle
Andrew Buckland vs. Dan Chambers
Solomon Hutcherson vs. Amir Rahnavardi
Myles Merola vs. Ariel Sexton
Tim Hague vs. Miodrag Petkovic
Nabil Khatib vs. Lucas Rota
Babian Cortez vs. Juan Barrantes