Paige VanZant returns to competition in October when she takes on Jessica Eye at the UFC 216 pay-per-view event. VanZant will be moving up from the 115-pound division to the 125-pound weight class.
The 23-year-old recently took part in an interview with UFC.com and discussed a number of topics including why she’s moving up to flyweight, her thoughts on Jessica Eye as an opponent, training at a new team and the upcoming season of The Ultimate Fighter.
On moving up to flyweight:
“I have trouble making 115 and I’ve never told anyone that before. It’s kind of been one of my best kept secrets. I cut from like 137 normally, so cutting 22 pounds for somebody my size is pretty significant. So I just made the decision that I don’t want to kill my body”
On Jessica Eye as an opponent:
“I look at her losses and she’s only lost to top-ranked fighters. If you look at my losses – I’ve only lost to the best in the 115 division. I think it’s the perfect matchup. I love the girl but it was time for me to move up and time for her to move down. We kind of texted each other and said, ‘Hey, you want to bang it out?’ And we both said, ‘Yeah, let’s do it.’”
On leaving Team Alpha Male:
“I’m officially fighting out of Gracie Barra. It’s a big change in my life but I couldn’t be happier with the way things are going,”
On The Ultimate Fighter 26, which crowns the first ever women’s flyweight champ:
“I’m so excited about this season. I can’t wait to watch it and especially with me moving up to 125 division it opens up a lot of potential matchups for me. So I’m going to be watching The Ultimate Fighter very closely. I can’t wait to see who gets crowned the champion in this division because now it’s mine.”
UFC 216 takes place on October 7 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States. The main card will be aired live on pay-per-view.