Paige VanZant keen to check free company, however focus is on UFC 251 bout

Paige VanZant competed on ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars” in 2016. It was enormous crossover publicity for somebody who was, on the time, a prime MMA prospect.

VanZant stated Tuesday she made more cash on that present than she has in her eight UFC fights mixed. Quickly, she is going to try and money in on her notoriety and combating talent as a free agent. However first, she has one battle remaining on her UFC contract.

VanZant will face Amanda Ribas at UFC 251 on July 11 in Abu Dhabi.

“I need to show myself,” VanZant advised ESPN. “I need to show how good I’m. I understand how exhausting I’ve labored. So, no, the strain is not greater, and I do actually really feel my worth would not change, whether or not I win or lose. I nonetheless have set myself up for fulfillment, and I’ll nonetheless eternally be Paige VanZant, however that does not imply I am not going to go on the market and battle to die. This battle issues extra to me than any battle in my whole life. I am keen to place all of it on the market.”

Stars’ criticism of the UFC for its pay scale has elevated the previous few months. UFC mild heavyweight champion Jon Jones and welterweight contender Jorge Masvidal have been vocal on social media about wanting their fair proportion of compensation. Former UFC bantamweight champion Henry Cejudo retired and vacated his title, leaving the door open if the cash and alternative have been proper for a return.

VanZant, 26, has been discussing her pay for a while. In August, she remarked that she might make more cash posting photographs on Instagram than she might by combating. She has greater than 2.5 million followers. VanZant stated Tuesday that her battle contract is similar one she signed when she was 22 years outdated and going right into a December 2015 essential occasion bout with Rose Namajunas. VanZant stated she makes $46,000 as a base battle purse, with a $46,000 win bonus connected to that. She believes she will be able to land extra in free company.

“I simply really feel like a daily extension is not what I need, and I need to show my price and my worth — and I desire a brand-new contract,” stated VanZant, who’s repped by Malki Kawa and Abe Kawa of First Spherical Administration. “And I am actually excited to get that chance and actually take a look at the free company as a result of how are you aware what your worth is except you may go take a look at it amongst all the opposite sharks?”

VanZant (8-4) has had an up-and-down few years. She returned from “Dancing with the Stars” with a highlight-reel, jumping-kick knockout of Bec Rawlings. On the time, it appeared just like the sky was the restrict for “12 Gauge.”

However VanZant misplaced to Michelle Waterson in her subsequent battle, then moved as much as flyweight (125 kilos) due to the powerful weight cuts at strawweight (115 kilos). VanZant broke her arm in her flyweight debut towards Jessica-Rose Clark in January 2018, a unanimous resolution loss. The arm has hampered her ever since, and he or she has wanted a number of surgical procedures to appropriate it. VanZant’s most up-to-date battle was a second-round submission win over Rachael Ostovich at UFC Brooklyn on Jan. 19, 2019.

With a victory over Ribas, who’s a prime prospect like VanZant as soon as was, VanZant would go into free company on a two-fight successful streak. It is a essential bout in her profession and an opportunity to make good financially on all that reputation and potential. VanZant, who has not dominated out re-signing with the UFC, stated she is so centered on the Ribas battle that she has uncared for her social media and sponsors to focus on coaching.

“I have not posted something on Instagram,” she stated. “Nothing issues to me apart from this battle, and it is a clear slate for me. I am simply excited to go on the market and show my worth to utterly all people. And I believe that combating is how I do this.”

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