clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

UFC champ Nunes: 'I know if Rousey is coming back, I'm going to keep the championship'

UFC women's bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes has no issue if she has to fight Julianna Pena or Valentina Shevchenko in her first title defense', but she's eyeing Ronda Rousey as her next opponent.

Joshua Dahl-USA TODAY Sports

The UFC's women's 135 lbs division has been in a constant state of change over the past few months. Four women have held the championship belt from the night of UFC 193 to UFC 200: Ronda Rousey, Holly Holm, Miesha Tate, and Amanda Nunes. The latest title fight saw Nunes dominate and then submit Tate in the UFC 200 main event, while Holly Holm would lose to Valentina Shevchenko just two weeks later.

Of course, the big question mark that looms over this weight class is whether or not Ronda Rousey will return any time soon, if ever again. Should Rousey compete again, it's expected (based on Dana White's words ... for whatever value they have) that Rousey will get an immediate title shot. In a UFC 201 Q&A session on Friday, Nunes was asked about who she wants to fight next, and her answer was simple. (Transcription via Fox Sports)

"Ronda Rousey," Nunes said. "But we have a couple of girls in line right now — Julianna Pena, Valentina Shevchenko, and if Ronda's not coming back, I'll take Julianna Pena. It's no problem."

Nunes also felt confident that she'd be able to stop the vaunted judo throws of Rousey.

"I've been training jiu-jitsu since I started. Jiu-jitsu and judo both together. I know how to block very well judo throws, I know how to use my hips very well. I know if Ronda Rousey is coming back, I'm going to keep the championship," Nunes said.

Rousey underwent minor surgery that will see her target date for a potential return pushed back to December 2016 or January 2017. Meanwhile, Julianna Pena figures to be the top title challenger after her unanimous decision win over Cat Zingano, who is the only woman to defeat Nunes in the UFC. Shevchenko, who as mentioned earlier defeated Holm at UFC on FOX 20, dropped a unanimous decision to Nunes at UFC 196 in March.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Bloody Elbow Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your MMA and UFC news from Bloody Elbow