Antonio Rogerio and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira came into the world together.

They might just be exiting the MMA world together as well.

The longtime standout twins are both on the UFC 190 card this weekend in Brazil – Rogerio in light-heavyweight clash with fellow veteran Mauricio ‘Shogun’ Rua, and Rodrigo meeting Stefan ‘Skyscraper’ Struve in a heavyweight tilt.

If the duo end up on the wrong side of the ledger on Saturday night, it’s quite likely they’ll both be looking not only pink slips from the UFC but also the very end of their fighting careers.

Rogerio has won just two of his last five fights, and has totaled just six fights in total since 2010. The last time out – over one year ago – he was taken to the woodshed by Anthony “Rumble” Johnson and wilted just 44 seconds into their bout.

Meanwhile, Rodrigo has put on some hard miles since Frank Mir bopped him around in 2008. Mir handed Nogueira the first KO loss of his career. The second KO loss came two fights later. After defeating an aged Randy Couture, Nogueira was pounded out by Cain Velasquez in less than three minutes. Following some redemption in beating Brendan Schaub, Nogueria had his arm broken by Mir, and then his latest outing, it was KO No. 3 when Roy Nelson planted him in the canvas in the first round.

Of the two, Rodrigo probably has the best opportunity to hold his employment status. In facing Struve, he’s up against a fighter who has been KO’d by Alistair Overeem and Mark Hunt in his last two bouts, and Struve is hardly a serious banger.

In a rematch 10 years in the making, Rogerio gets Rua, who is a shell of his former shelf yet still ranked No. 8 in the division. He’s lost four of his last five and he hasn’t won two in a row since 2009 when he beat the now-retired tandem of Chuck Liddell and Mark Coleman. In Rua’s last outing, he was blasted by Ovince St. Preux in only 34 seconds. Despite that, Rua, who slipped past Rogerio in Pride’s 2005 Middleweight Grand Prix, somehow still seems like a guy who can pull out a must-win when he needs it the most (see his win of James Te Hua two years ago, and his surprising victory in a rematch against Forrest Griffin in 2011.

Between Rogerio, currently seeded 11th in the rankings, and Rua, there are 43 career victories with 25 of those wins via knockout. Rogerio will stand in at 39 years of age, while Rua is 33. And that’s an old 33 considering the way he’s gone out against St. Preux and Dan Henderson.

Rodrigo’s career log is highlighted by many notable victories over the likes of Coleman, Ricco Rodriguez, Josh Barnett, Semmy Schilt and Mirko Cro Cop, plus a reign as Pride heavyweight champ and UFC interim heavyweight champ.

Rogerio’s career highlights are certainly fewer, though there are surely standout wins coming against Kazuhiro Sakuraba, Overeem, Tito Ortiz, and Rashad Evans.

Should Rua find a cupful from the fountain of youth one more time, and Struve prove he’s still a top-15 fighter, the Nogueira brothers might see their careers come to an end. The siblings won’t want to go out falling face-first into the canvas or tapping out especially in their home country where they are heroic figures.

But every fighter’s last stand eventually comes.

About The Author

Scott Zerr
Staff Writer

Scott joins The MMA Corner having spent the last 14 years in mixed martial arts as Director of Media & Fighter Relations for the Maximum Fighting Championship. He will provide The MMA Corner with insight on breaking news in the sport, plus an insider's perspective on business developments, matchmaking, fighter signings, and much more. In addition to his longtime work in MMA, Scott was a sports reporter before moving into media relations and marketing. After growing up and working in Edmonton, Alberta, Scott has since moved to Bakersfield, California to be with his wife Christina (an avid fight fan, thank goodness) and kids.

  • Christopher Flores

    Between the two, I would expect Rogerio to win… Rodrigo is old, slow, and tired. Struve doesn’t have much power, but he’s still a HW and every HW has KO power. But, if he moves quickly and throws plenty of kicks and punches, Struve should have no trouble walking out of this fight with a win under his belt. However, despite his losses, Rogerio hasn’t looked awful in his past couple of fights (nevermind Johnson… he did the same thing to Gustaffeson… so that doesn’t really apply) and Rua has looked past his expiration date. Not sure how you came to the conclusion that Rodrigo is the more likely to win. I don’t see anything to suggest, even while playing favorites, that Rodrigo’s odds are better. KO losses to Reem and Hunt… you do remember they’re both known for heavy power even among HWs, right?