Hot strawweight prospect Amanda Ribas has big plans for her UFC career. Paired up against Paige VanZant at UFC 251. the rising Brazilian compares her future in the UFC to double champion Amanda Nunes’, and considers winning both strawweight and flyweight belts before retiring from the sport.
In an interview with Ag Fight, Ribas explains her double title aspirations and points out that as being the reason why she accepted to take on VanZant at flyweight, despite her previous UFC fights being at strawweight. In Amanda’s opinion, fighting Paige at 125 will be a great test to see how she does at the heavier weight class.
“It’s something I’m thinking about (to perform in both divisions). When the UFC offered me the chance to fight at flyweight, I loved it, because I think you can never settle down. This is an opportunity for me to test myself. I want to see how I do in this division. Who knows, I might copy Amanda Nunes and become a double champion.”
When it comes to fighting someone more famous than her in VanZant, Ribas also looks at it as an opportunity to make a bigger name for herself. Amanda is aware that their employers want fighters who can draw an audience, and believes that a win over a name like Paige’s can only be beneficial for her in that aspect.
“Paige is a very famous athlete, not only in the United States, but all over the world. If I fight her, I can be seen by an audience that I would not otherwise. This is very important for my image in the UFC. The UFC wants an athlete who draws, who is watched by the biggest number of people, so they can money off of that. So I think that if I can draw as many people as Paige, that would be great for me.”
Still undefeated in her UFC career, Ribas (9-1) scored three wins in the Octagon so far, beating Emily Whitmire, Mackenzie Dern and most recently, Randa Markos, back in March. The 26-year-old’s only loss happened in November 2015, when fellow UFC fighter Polyana Viana knocked her out in a bout for the Jungle Fight strawweight belt.
Now, Ribas is expected to take on VanZant at UFC 251, on July 11, in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. The card is scheduled to be headlined by a welterweight title fight between the champion, Kamaru Usman, and short notice replacement Jorge Masvidal.