UFC on ESPN 4 winner Jennifer Maia believes next fight should be for flyweight title
SAN ANTONIO – Jennifer Maia notched her second win in a row in the always open flyweight division, and she wants a title shot next.
After defeating Roxanne Modafferi via unanimous decision this past Saturday at UFC on ESPN 4, Maia believes she’s ready for a shot at gold.
“I fought some of the best in the category, and I want to be the champion, and I want to fight for the title,” Maia said backstage at AT&T Center.
Maia beat Modafferi for the second time in her career. The two previously fought in Invicta FC in 2016, where Maia defended her flyweight championship in a split-decision win.
Maia (17-5-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) stepped in on short notice after Modafferi lost her original opponent, Liz Carmouche, who was taken out of the fight to challenge Valentina Shevchenko for the 125-pound title next month at UFC on ESPN+ 14.
Maia accepted the fight only because she was taking on a familiar opponent in Modafferi, someone she knew she could beat.
“It helped a lot, and that was the only reason I accepted the fight on such short notice,” Maia said. “And that’s because I knew I could defend myself against her.”
And while she saw improvements in Modafferi’s game from the last time, she knew what to expect come fight night.
“I expected her to fight this way, to try to take me down all the time, but she was better this time than the last time we fought,” Maia said. “I was sure she was going to try and take me down, because that was her only chance. Although I’m very good on the floor, as well, and I was aware of her game and I played mine. I won, and I think this is going to take me to the best place.”
A title fight means Maia would have to hit 125 pounds on the dot, as she missed weight by three pounds going into her fight with Modafferi. However, she assures everyone that it won’t happen again.
“It was something that has never happened to me before, and it was on the final stage of my weight loss,” Maia said. “It’s something that made me very mad, and it’s never going to happen again.”
3 weeks ago