Ketlen Vieira returns to competition at the UFC Fight Night 137 event on September 22 when she takes on Tonya Evinger.
Despite having a fight booked, Vieira (10-0) is already thinking ahead and has recently been telling the press that she is deserving of a UFC title shot. In fact, with Nunes currently in talks to move up and fight Cris Cyborg for the featherweight title, Vieira wants Holm for the interim bantamweight belt.
“Every fighter that joins the UFC dreams about getting into a title fight,” Vieira said. “I think I’ve earned that fight. The UFC hasn’t given me that right, I’ve earned it with my team’s hard work. But I use that to give me more strength in this camp and put on a great fight at UFC Sao Paulo. It’s my first time fighting in Brazil (in the UFC), so it’s something to give me more motivation and work harder.”
“With this fight I’ll earn, once for all, a title shot. There’s no one else,” Vieira said. “The only thing I see is an interim title fight with Holly Holm. One way or the other, winning this fight I see myself fighting for the belt. But we don’t want to think about that. We have to focus on Tonya, who is a very tough opponent.”
The 26-year-old believes Holm is a “more complicated” and “tougher” fight for her than Amanda Nunes, hence why she is eager to challenge her.
“Every fight is a fight. We know that some styles don’t match, some styles do match,” Vieira said. “I see Holly as more complicated because she’s an athlete that doesn’t stop. She’s a southpaw, and you can’t make mistakes because she has a powerful kick, so I see Holly Holm as a bit tougher than Amanda.
“Amanda fights more flat-footed, we know her best attack is a straight punch she throws, but she doesn’t have a cardio as good as Holly Holm’s. (Holm) fights five rounds and has the same gas in the end, so I think Holly Holm is a tougher fight. Of course that Amanda is very tough, they both are, but I think Holly Holm is a bit tougher.”
Fight fans, what do you think of Vieira’s comments? With a win over Evinger, is she deserving of a title shot?