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OUT OF FIGHT, NINJA STILL SEEKING LICENSE
Monday, June 18, 2007 - by Ivan Canello - MMAWeekly.com
Chute Boxe middleweight Murilo "Ninja" Rua has dropped off the June 22nd Strikeforce "Shamrock vs. Baroni" event on Showtime pay-per-view. He failed the required physical for licensure in the State of California due to undisclosed reasons. Rua was scheduled to face Joey Villasenor for the vacant EliteXC middleweight title. EliteXC is co-promoting the event along with Strikeforce.
When asked today about the failed physical, Rua told MMAWeekly, "Tomorrow morning I am going to another doctor to get my license, but unfortunately my fight [with Villasenor] was postponed and I will only fight in September.
"Whoever wins between Joey Villasenor and [Falaniko Vitale] will fight me in the next EliteXC."
Rua had been looking to make his debut in the United States at Strikeforce and continue the recent momentum he had built in England. Following back-to-back losses to Paulo Filho and Denis Kang in Pride, Rua defeated popular British fighters Mark Weir and Alex Reid for England's Cage Rage promotion.
Asked about his brother, Mauricio "Shogun" Rua, Murilo commented, "Shogun is fine. He is very confident about his UFC debut. He's feeling that MMA fans really like him here in America."
There is still no word from the UFC on when and against whom Shogun will make his UFC debut. The popular Chute Boxe star is currently the #1 ranked fighter in the world in the light heavyweight division by MMAWeekly.com.