by Ivan Canello – MMAWeekly.com
Coming off a loss to Robbie Lawler for the EliteXC and ICON Sport middleweight titles, Murilo “Ninja” Rua will face off against Xavier Foupa-Pokam, a French fighter, at Cage Rage 24 on Dec. 1 in London, England.
Foupa-Pokam’s last competed in September, when he knocked out Pierre Guillet at Cage Rage 23.
“I do know that I need to get back and show that I can do more than I did in my last fight,” Ninja told MMAWeekly. “That wasn’t me. People who know me know that stamina is the last thing I need to be worried about and (against Lawler) I got tired for some reason.
“I’ll be in the best shape of my life (against Foupa-Pokam). I am training with our new strength and conditioning coach every day at 7 a.m. I am at Chute Boxe Camp working on my endurance and power with him, and after that I do the rest of the things I always did.”
Ninja knows that he needs his conditioning to be up to par against Foupa-Pokam because he expects nothing less than a high-paced, exciting fight.
“I know that Xavier Foupa-Pokam likes to stand up and punch. It will be an electric fight for sure, the crowd will see a real war because I am going to war for this fight.”
The Cage Rage promotion was acquired by ProElite Inc. (the parent company of EliteXC) in early September. The Dec. 1 event will be the first under the new ownership agreement.
CAGE RAGE 24 FIGHT CARD:
Murilo “Ninja” Rua vs. Xavier Foupa-Pokam
Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos vs. Paul Cahoon
Drew Fickett vs. Mark Weir
Marios Zaromskis vs. Ross Pointin
Tom Watson vs. Mark Epstein
Dave Legeno vs. George Castro
Neil Grove vs. Robert Berry
Ivan Serati vs. Lee Hasdell
Abdul Mohamed vs. Robbie Oliver
Robert Paczkow vs. James Mc Sweeney
Ronnie Mann vs. Brad Pickett