After all, it’s not every day you get to be mentored by someone who not only knows you but has some valuable first-hand experience with a lot of your possible competition.
“One thing I love about training with Miesha is that her and I, we’ve trained together,” Mazany told MMAjunkie Radio. “We’ve sparred together. We’ve grappled together. We’ve wrestled together. So she knows what I have to offer, what I have to put on the table. I like it when she’s like, ‘You should fight so and so, I think that would be a really great fight for you.’
“Because she’s experienced – not only with the game and probably a lot of the girls that are currently in the 135 division, but also with me.”
Tate was the one who told Mazany (4-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC) that, four fights into her professional MMA career, she had just landed a UFC contract. The news, however, came with a caveat: Mazany would have only 16 days to prepare for her debut against former title challenger and Olympic medalist Sara McMann.
Add to it that Mazany, who’d just finished “a big steak dinner,” was a little bit heavy, and you have some unfavorable conditions for her first time in the octagon. But, from the start, the answer to Tate’s offer was always clear on the newcomer’s mind.
“It’s one of those things where it’s like a door opens, and you’ve got to run through it,” Mazany said.
The debut, which took place at UFC Fight Night 105 in February, didn’t go well. Mazany ended up on the unfortunate end of an arm-triangle choke by her much more experienced opponent. But regardless, only five fights into her professional MMA career, Mazany is officially a UFC fighter.
Moving forward, the bantamweight plans on still getting another fight by year’s end. As far as possible matchups go, she’s already got some social media beef stewing.
Well, sort of.
“Her name is Lucie Pudilova,” Mazany said. “She’s newly signed. I originally wanted to fight her, because – she first got signed, and she fought Lina Lansberg. Good scrap, really good fight. Lina ended up pulling off the win. And then after, my Twitter was blowing up, with Lucie like, ‘I want to fight Gina,’ talking all this trash.
“And then I got on Instagram, and she was talking all this trash. And I was like, “I just got on the scene, I just got beat up by Sara McMann taking a last-minute fight, what did I do?’”
Mazany would later come to find that the confrontation with Pudilova, who recovered from the Lansberg loss with a decision over Ji Yeon Kim, was merely the work of a “total Twitter troll.” But now that the seed has been planted, she’s down if Pudilova is.
“I think that’d be a fun fight,” Mazany said.
For more on the UFC’s upcoming schedule, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.
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