Vintage 'Shogun' Rua blasts James Te Huna with one-shot KO

Shogun v James Te Huna
Mauricio 'Shogun' Rua knocked out James Te Huna with a vicious left hook.
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Mike Chiappetta

Mike Chiappetta has documented the fast-growing sport of mixed martial arts since 2006 for news organizations including SB Nation, NBCSports.com, FIGHT! Magazine, AOL and ESPN. He appears regularly as an analyst on countless television shows and radio programs, including CBS Radio and MMA Beat. Follow him on Twitter.


Brisbane, Australia

On the way towards Australia, Mauricio “Shogun” Rua faced plenty of criticism and adversity. He was too old, or too small, or a combination of both. UFC president Dana White had even publicly spoken about the possibility of talking to Rua about retirement.

Hold off on the career obituaries.

In a turn-back-the-clock performance, a fast, powerful Shogun torched James Te Huna, knocking him out with a crushing left hook in just 63 seconds of their UFC Fight Night: Hunt vs. Silva co-main event.

The end came in a flash, as the two threw the same punch at the same time. Te Huna’s never landed, while Rua’s was flush on the chin, sending Te Huna crashing down to the mat unconscious.

Rua followed up with a ground strike that wasn’t really necessary, as the ref was already moving into position to halt the action.

“Te Huna is a tough fighter, a very good striker,” Rua said through a translator afterward. “I knew he’d come out aggressive. I expected him to wrestle. I was timing his engagement, moving forward. I was timing his entrances. I was happy that it landed and it ended the bout.”

The fight didn’t last long, but Rua looked vintage, coming out lean and in good shape, and when he moved, his feet were agile to go with his fast-moving hands. The two barely had a chance to get started when the curtain came down.

Te Huna, who had won four of his last five fights, had actually come into the fight as a moderate favorite over the former UFC light-heavyweight champion. The loss drops him to 16-7.

Rua had lost two in a row and three of his last four, but now moves to 21-9.

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