October 21, 2020

Exclusive: Kay Hansen on her UFC debut this Saturday

Kay Hansen received a text message from Invicta FC president Shannon Knapp on Sunday, to expect a call from Mick Maynard.

And then the phone rang in a matter of moments: “Hey, it’s Mick Maynard,” he said. “Hey, do you want to fight on Saturday and sign a multiple fight contract?”

The idea of signing a UFC contract was still sinking in this morning for the 20-year-old. She’s only a month older than Chase Hooper – the UFC’s youngest fighter.

Hansen got caught her off guard when the contract was offered to her.

“I can’t put it in words. It’s so crazy because it came out of nowhere. It wasn’t like they hit me up a while ago. I got a message from him. I didn’t read it at first,” Hansen said. “I shot a message to my coach or my boyfriend. And I was like ‘they just offered me this, and all of a sudden my phone rings, 10 minutes of me not answering.”

“He just came out with it, ‘are you available June 27 and you can make the weight?’ I said can you give me about 20 or 30 minutes to talk to my coach. And that was that, I made the choice.”

The celebrations were put on hold, as she was told last night that all the medicals needed to be done.

“So, I called my coach immediately because I was freaking out, knowing that I need all my medicals by Wednesday,” Hansen said. “He made a couple calls for me. I’ve been doing medicals all day.”

“I’m literally waiting for him to pick me up from the gym right now, so I can go and get a couple of medicals done and train later tonight.”

Things are moving quickly for the former Invicta FC strawweight, but if time permitted she would digest this special moment with her boyfriend Keith Krikorian.

After signing a contract during fight week, Hansen said that she feels a lot of emotions. She hasn’t gotten the chance to celebrate with her boyfriend.

Krikorian will be absent in his girlfriend’s corner, as he will compete in a tournament on the same day of her fight.

The 20-year spent three years under the Invicta FC banner. She never turned down a fight until now.

“If I’m being completely honest, Invicta offered me a fight. They have a card on July 2 and I turned it down. I feel like people try to put a mask on,” Hansen said. “I’ve been struggling with my mental health a little bit, everything in the world is kind of f-cked right now.”

“I think it kind of took a toll on me. It was the first time in my life that I turned down a fight. I think this UFC call came in a perfect time for me. It kind of told me that things are good. I hold Invicta so dear to me. It’s bittersweet for me to sign this contract because they are like my second family.”

“I started with them when I was 18, and they saw me in my best moments and my worst moments. They took such good care of me when I was at my lowest.”

Saturday night will be a reunion of a couple of Invicta FC fighters making their debuts. Hansen takes on former Invicta FC atomweight Jinh Yu Frey in a strawweight bout. While flyweight Miranda Maverick faces UFC veteran Mara Romero Borella.

“Miranda came to Invicta before me, but we fought on the same cards a lot. She’s a hard worker,” Hansen said. “So, it’s awesome to get to fight on the same card with her again. We are making our debuts, so I’m pretty stoked about that.”

“I was surprised when they offered Jinh Yu Frey. She’s an atomweight and I didn’t expect another Invicta veteran either. I think it’s going to be an exciting fight. Everyone knows what I’m going to try to bring to the table.”

The 10th Planet’s Hansen joins the UFC after an unexpected call-up. She will make her debut on the prelims of Poirier vs Hooker this Saturday.

Cristhian Plasencia

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