Sara McMann will headline the preliminary portion of this Saturday’s UFC 215 event when she battles undefeated Ketlen Vieira, the fight is being considered a potential title eliminator. However, McMann says she is willing to drop out of the fight to step-in if the main event bantamweight title fight between Amanda Nunes and Valentina Shevchenko falls through again.
“I’d do it in a heartbeat,” McMann told MMA Fighting. “I’ll step right in.”
“I called Sean Shelby and let him know,” McMann continued. “I’m already training for a fight, I’ve been in the big fights before, I’m ready for it. If they need me, they know where to find me.”
Nunes was originally scheduled to defend her title against Shevchenko in the main event of July’s UFC 213 PPV, however due to a bad case of sinusitis, Nunes was forced to withdraw. Shevchenko was also removed from the card due to no available replacement being ready to fight her on such short notice.
Whether she fights for the title on Saturday or not, McMann (11-3-0) is confident she will win her first UFC world title in the near future. The 36-year-old recently moved to Sacramento’s Team Alpha Male gym and feels her time there has turned her into a completely different fighter.
“It was just the right move at this point in my career,” McMann said. “I was ready to go to one of the bigger, elite gyms, but I also didn’t want to go one who has established fighters in my weight class, because you want to be the priority and you don’t want divided loyalties. Team Alpha Male had strawweights. So that was a factor, plus you look at the coaching staff, the depth of the talent there, the positive attitude that starts with [gym founder] Urijah Faber and goes on down, even things like, there’s physical therapy if I need it, everything is all under one roof. The change has been great.
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UFC 215 takes place this Saturday 9th September from the Rogers Place in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. The preliminary card headlined by Sara McMann will be aired live on FS1, whilst the main card featuring Nunes VS Shevchenko will air live on pay-per-view.