Julianna Peña is once again defending her title-winning performance against Amanda Nunes at UFC 269 earlier this month.
Peña dethroned Nunes after submitting her with a rear-naked choke in the second round of their fight. The finish was clean, but the newly crowned champion has been questioned about how secure the choke actually was since her hooks were not in and the ‘Lioness’ tapped a little too quickly.
The 32-year-old has already explained that Nunes had “no choice but to tap” or she “would have broke her neck”, so the excuses of her opponent being fatigued or quitting should be invalid by now. And if they are not, then the ‘Venezuelan Vixen’ has recently made an offer to those still doubting her and the choke she used.
“It was great,” Peña told Jim Rome on The Jim Rome Show. “That was the second time that I finished [a fight with that choke]. It’s how I finished Sara McMann in January and it’s something that’s not a regular rear-naked choke. I know that a lot of people want to discredit me. A lot of people want to say that I didn’t have any hooks in and that it wasn’t real and she tapped because she quit.
“I guarantee you, and Jim, maybe one day you can take me up on this, or any of your listeners. If any of them out there want to come to my house and let me put that choke on them, I guarantee you they’re going to tap as well and I guarantee you they’ll be able to feel that force and pressure that I was putting on Amanda.”
Despite her frustration at being discredited, Peña wants to turn those doubters into believers as she settles into being champion and prepares for what comes next.
“It makes me a little bit upset, to be honest,” said Peña. “They’re trying to discredit my work and the hard work that I’ve done, but you know what? Everybody has an opinion and if anything, I just want to be able to take a second to all the trolls out there and say, ‘Please, be on my side. Let’s go through this journey together. I’m the new UFC bantamweight world champion’. I said it before, and maybe it was annoying in the past because I knew what I needed to do and what I had to do to get the fight and I did that.
“So maybe people are a little off put at the fact that I’ve been squawking about this thing for the last five years, but now that I finally have it [and] now that I did what I said I was going to do, let’s move forward and try to go on this journey together with me as the new UFC bantamweight champion and change those people’s minds.”
Thought it has yet to be confirmed, all signs point to the UFC booking an immediate rematch between Peña and Nunes sometime next year.