Marco Ruas student Pedro Rizzo will face a former opponent of his master and friend for his next challenge in the cage. On May 15, the Brazilian will do battle with Gary Goodridge. Ruas and Goodridge faced off back in 1998, in the now-defunct Pride promotion. On the occasion, Gary succumbed to a heelhook. This time it’s Pedro Rizzo’s turn to fight the veteran.
“He’s an experienced guy who’s fought just about everybody. We’ve never been in the ring together and I’m stoked. It’s the greatest thing to train hard and have a fight scheduled,” says Pedro, who hasn’t yet asked Ruas for advice about the challenge.
“Marco fought him a long time ago. He’s changed a lot since then. Goodridge had good fights in K-1 and is a totally different fighter now. Everyone’s seen lots of his fights and I don’t believe there will be any surprises,” he assays.
The event featuring the matchup is promoted by UFC referee Mario Yamasaki. With the Ultimate Fighting Championship calling up heroes from the days of old, could a win lead the fighter back to the organization that brought him to fame?
“I’m returning to the United States to fight and, of course, I’d like to fight in the UFC. But I’m not thinking about that now and I don’t even know if this fight will add anything to that hope. But awaking someone’s interest will depend on how I carry myself. It is a return to fighting top opponents, though. We’ll see.”
Rizzo has been plagued with injury, mainly are severe tendonitis afflicting his elbows. Now recovered, against Goodridge he will be 100%.