Although it’s Amanda Ribas’ first flyweight in nearly two years, the Brazilian has big aspirations for her future if she can score a win on Saturday night at UFC Vegas 54. Paired up against perennial contender Katlyn Chookagian, the 28-year-old believes a victory should help her cut in line towards a title shot.
In an interview with Combate, Ribas explained how the goal of becoming UFC champion is always on her mind, which makes her excited about the opportunity to meet Chookagian. In fact, Amanda believes she could be closer to a title fight at flyweight than at strawweight, given how shallower of a division the former is when compared to the latter.
“It’s a beautiful thing, such a great opportunity for me, and I love it,” Ribas said. “Some people may see this as added pressure, but I see it as motivation. It’s pushing me to do what I do in the Octagon. I think about the belt all the time. I think that’s what makes this such a great opportunity. I thank the UFC for the offer, because if they gave me that, it’s because they believe in me. I believe in myself and that’s key.
“It gives me goosebumps,” Ribas said. “Life is so crazy. I was ranked in another division. Each step I took was so exciting and now I’m fighting someone from a different division who is even better ranked. I’m closer to fighting for the belt at this division than mine. This is something I only expected later on. This is what’s been getting me so motivated.”
In her last outing, Ribas (11-2) scored a unanimous decision over Virna Jandiroba, back in October 2021. The victory made the 28-year-old recover from a TKO defeat to Marina Rodriguez, in January of the same year.
Now, Ribas is expected to take on Chookagian at UFC Vegas 54, on May 14, at the UFC Apex, The card is scheduled to be headlined by a light heavyweight bout between former champion Jan Blachowicz and contender Aleksandar Rakic.