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Alexa Grasso details cultural shift of women’s MMA in Mexico

The women’s MMA scene in Mexico has experienced rapid growth since Alexa Grasso got into the game.

Alexa Grasso is among the best Mexico’s mixed martial arts scene has to offer and she has seen first-hand how women’s MMA has boomed in her home country.

Grasso linked up with Bloody Elbow ahead of her main card bout with Claudia Gadelha at UFC 246. The 11th-ranked strawweight fighter dissected the culture of women fighting in Mexico, her fight with Carla Esparza at UFC Mexico and her long-term ambitions.

“The culture in Mexico about fighting is growing so much. I remember when I used to compete years and years ago, there were only two girls in the jiu-jitsu tournaments. There was a really low quantity of MMA fights with girls. Now I know that every event in Mexico has one or two female fights. It’s growing a lot. There are many Mexican girls that are making noise,” Grasso shared. “I think we are doing a good job so the people can notice that mixed martial arts are allowed for women.”

“This is important in our country and around the world because women are having a lot of issues with violence,” she continued. “This is a goal that I have: that all the women know to train, to defend themselves and to know that you don’t have to be rude or mean to be a fighter. You can do it in the best way, you know, very professional and diplomatic and also be a warrior.”

Grasso was humble in defeat when reflecting on her majority decision loss to Esparza. She caught Esparza in a deep armbar and popped her arm, yet the fight continued. Grasso was asked if the fight should have been stopped once the arm popped.

“Well I thought it was, but the referee didn’t stop,” Grasso said. “She continued fighting. I’m fighting against the best girls in the world which is pretty tough. I thought the fight was over when I saw her arm, but it wasn’t so... I saw it and I felt it, but if the referee didn’t, it’s okay.”

UFC 246: McGregor vs. Cerrone takes place at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday, Jan. 18.