UFC Fight Night 38: 'Shogun' Rua eying knockout victory over Dan Henderson in rematch

Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

'Shogun" Rua says his first fight against Dan Henderson at UFC 139 should have been scored a draw, which is why he aims to get the knockout victory in the rematch to avoid any and all controversy.

In 2011, Mauricio Rua and Dan Henderson put on one of the best fights in mixed martial arts (MMA) history at UFC 139, going toe-to-toe for 25 minutes with each man enjoying their fair share of success in a battle that proved to be "Fight of the Year."

In the end, "Hendo" was awarded the unanimous decision victory.

Now, two years later, Rua and Henderson will try to recreate the magic one more time when they meet on March 23, 2014, at UFC Fight Night 38 in Natal, Brazil.

And as "Shogun" looks into his crystal ball, he sees another stand-up affair, as he recently told MMA Fighting.

"He's a tough opponent and comes forward all the time. He's a specialist in the striking game and I'm sure he'll try that against me. It's going to be an interesting fight. We're both aggressive fighters, we don't go there to play it safe, so it's going to be a great fight. The first fight with Dan Henderson was a war, everybody loved it. Every MMA fan wants to see it again and, God willing, I'll get out with the win this time."

While Rua disagrees with the decision the judges' rendered in San Jose, Calif., he intends to get the knockout in the rematch to avoid any controversy.

"I can't do anything about it, but I think a draw would have been fairer. But it's in the past. I'm focused on March 23 now. It's a rematch, and I'm going there to get a win. I will go for the finish all the time. Everybody knows that's how I fight, so I'm going for the knockout."

Rua is coming off an impressive first round knockout victory over James Te Huna (video) at UFC Fight Night 33 in Dec. 2013, ending his two-fight skid.

Henderson, meanwhile, looks to stop the bleeding after the Pride FC legend went on a three-fight losing streak for the first time in his career. And perhaps in the process, show the powers-that-be at ZUFFA that he deserves more money than he's currently getting.

What say you Maniacs, who's your pick to get the "W" in what is sure to be a fireworks-filled scrap?

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