Ahead of her bantamweight division return on Saturday, two-weight UFC champion, Amanda Nunes maintains she is extremely confident of securing her eighteenth career stoppage victory when pitted with challenger, Julianna Pena — labeling the #3 ranked contender as a “clown“.
Making her bantamweight division return for the first time in two years, Bahia standout, Nunes most recently defended her 135lbs title with a unanimous decision victory over two-time foe, inaugural featherweight champion, and common-opposition, Germaine de Randamie at UFC 245.
In the time since, Nunes has secured the first and second successful defenses of her featherweight crowns, taking a unanimous decision success against the recently retired, Felicia Spencer at UFC 250 in June of last year — before taking home a hugely one-sided opening round triangle armbar win over Megan Anderson at UFC 259 in March.
For Pena, The Ultimate Fighter 18 victor has been quite vocal ahead of her premier title challenge under the promotion’s scrutiny, having previously submitted common-foe, one-time title chaser, Sara McMann earlier this year at UFC 257 on ‘Fight Island’.
Given the Washington native’s UFC 200 win over common-foe, Cat Zingano — who is the last to defeat Nunes, Pena appears supremely self-assured that she can dethrone the Brazilain this weekend.
Reworked to meet Pena this weekend at the T-Mobile Arena, Nunes has taken severe umbrage with the former’s comments, leading to the champion’s dissecting of her opposition’s career, and confident claims she will find a straightforward finish.
“She’s delusional,” Nunes told MMA Junkie of Pena. “What about her friend, Miesha Tate? What about Sara McMann? Sara McMann almost beat her. Sara McMann give (sic) up in that fight. If she didn’t give up, she would’ve beat Julianna (Pena). I beat Sara McMann years ago. I feel like she can talk about whatever she wants. She has to do that to bring all the attention. I’m going to tell her she can have all the attention she wants, because Saturday is my night. Nobody is going to take that belt from me.“
“She has all the holes, so I can finish her on the floor,” Nunes said. “Germaine (de Randamie) finished her (via submission). Germaine is a striker and finished Julianna Pena. My game is above all those girls she fought. I just need a mistake from her on the striking or on the floor.“
Whilst Nunes maintains she has various routes of victory against Pena, she has complemented the latter’s overall ability as a striker, however, claims she has never shared the Octagon with someone of her own prowess.
“Inside the cage everyone becomes dangerous,” Nunes said. “She has nothing to lose. I have to really be ready for everything. She’s definitely dangerous. She’s a very good fighter. She never fight a lioness before.“
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