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By: Frank Hyden, MMATorch contributor
Mauricio "Shogun" Rua will fight Brandon Vera at UFC On FOX 4. Rua will almost assuredly beat Vera, the only question is how. What's more interesting to me is that Rua turned down a fight against Glover Teixeira. The reason I find that so interesting is that Rua admitted that he turned down the Teixeira fight because of the danger that he might lose. Rua says that Teixeira isn't a big name yet so the risk isn't worth it. He also basically admitted that Vera isn't a tough fight because Vera's not a name, at least not a real name or one you have to be wary of.
The fact that Rua admits this is incredible. This is one of the most basic lessons in sports, yet Rua apparently doesn't know what it is. By admitting that he didn't want to fight a relative unknown like Teixeira because he might lose is showing weakness. The Oklahoma City Thunder and Miami Heat are currently engaged in a really good NBA Finals right now. The Thunder punched their ticket to the Finals days before the Heat did, as Miami wasn't playing to potential and were struggling with the Boston Celtics. The question came up about who the Thunder would rather play, the immensely talented but sometimes underachieving Heat or the old but experienced Celtics? There's no question that the Thunder would have steamrolled the Celtics, they're just way too talented. The Thunder never said that they would prefer to play the Celtics, though, because that would be showing weakness.
Legends like Magic Johnson said that he would prefer to play the toughest team out there, to prove himself. He's got the heart of a champion. It may be smarter to want to fight the weaker opponent, but you don't admit that. No one in their right mind would say that Brandon Vera is a bigger name than Glover Teixeira, they're both under the radar. Rua basically admitted that he wants to fight the weaker opponent. That may be the smarter move, but admitting it is an incredibly dumb move.
Testosterone Replacement Therapy, or TRT, is coming up more and more in the news lately. A lot of opinions are divided, and that's because there are a lot of angles to consider. What makes TRT different than other forms of advanced medicine? Not long ago, tearing up your ACL or MCL was a death knell for a sports career. You could never recover from that. Now, it's fully possible to return back to form in a very short time. Some guys never make it back to 100%, but they get close enough that it's hard to really tell the difference.
People don't even blink when it comes to stuff like this, but they consider TRT an abomination? I think a large reason is that TRT is so nebulous. Why do you need it? Did you use steroids or the like, and now your testosterone levels are much lower than normal? Perhaps it's just hereditary, though? Or maybe you've never had levels that would be considered normal?
The only thing that's for certain is that I'm not going to take anyone's word for it. Plenty of guys have claimed to be clean, yet come up positive on drug tests. Carlos Condit said recently that TRT muddies the water. I kind of agree with that, but I would go further and say that the waters were already so muddy you can't see your hand in front of your face. All this TRT stuff does is add another layer of mud atop countless other layers. There are more questions than answers.
Comments and suggestions can be e-mailed to me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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