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In both frame and potential, a big Professional Fighters League heavyweight prospect plans on shocking the world next week.
With a record of 6-2, with all six of his wins coming by stoppage, Team Nogueira’s Renan Ferreira has no problem with what should be large underdog odds against Fabricio Werdum (24-9-1). One week before his debut in PFL heavyweight tournament against fellow countryman Werdum, “Problema” spoke with Sherdog about his expectations for the most important fight of his career.
“I’ve always prepared myself for great opportunities,” Ferreira explained. “I’m very honored to make my PFL debut against an idol like Werdum, one of the greatest heavyweights of the history who brought so many titles to Brazil. But I trained hard to prove that I came to make history. I’m here to stay.”
Ferreira has already trained with many experienced fighters like Ronaldo Souza, Rousimar Palhares, and Rodolfo Vieira as well as both Nogueira brothers. For this specific fight, however, the BJJ brown belt has done his camp in Rio de Janeiro specifically with Team Nogueira. There, he has the support of training partners including Richardson Moreira and up-and-coming talents like Rodolfo Bellato and Caio Borralho.
“Team Nogueira gave me an excellent structure of trainers. From striking, passing [through] wrestlers and ground specialist. Werdum is able to fight everywhere, but of course my main focus is to put my hands on him, and if I connect, he will be in trouble.”
Very happy with the excellent treatment PFL has given to its fighters, the local from Santa Tereza in the state of Goias recalls the hard times he had gone through in the past. Ferreira promised his 10-year-old, Samuel, that he will not lose that opportunity.
“When you pass through hard times, like we did, you learn to give your heart to an opportunity,” Ferreira said. “Anyone who already lived in an academy, having your own gi as pillow, knows the value of an opportunity like that. Besides being fighting one of the best heavyweights ever in one of the best events in the world, our fight will be broadcasted live to Brazil via Combate. That's a big dream coming [true].”
The confidence for “Problema” is at an all-time high, as the 6-foot-8 striker believes he will get the job done early.
“With all the respect Werdum deserves, I’ll fight my guts [out] to get the six points and guarantee my place in the playoffs,” Ferreira concluded.
PFL 3: 2021 Regular Season will be held at the Ocean Casino Resort in Atlantic City, N.J., on May 6. Heavyweights and women’s lightweights will be the featured attraction for the end of the first stage of the regular season. The headliner will see Ferreira square off against Werdum. The preliminary card will air on ESPN+ while the main card will be staged on ESPN2 in the U.S., although it will be airing on the Combate channel in Brazil.