VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Amanda Nunes is much happier with the end product for her return to the octagon.
The two-division UFC women’s champion makes a return this Saturday in the main event of UFC 289, and it was originally going to be a trilogy bout against Julianna Peña. However, after Peña sustained a rib injury, Mexico’s Irene Aldana stepped up as a replacement.
Nunes (22-5 MMA, 15-2 UFC) is uber confident she’ll get her hand raised, but she feels she did get a tougher matchup with the Aldana (14-6 MMA, 7-4 UFC) switch.
“Honestly, I will stop her. No doubt in my mind,” Nunes said at the UFC 289 pre-fight press conference on Thursday. “This belt is Brazilian. This belt is mine. I’m completely ready for this fight.
“She’s a better fighter than Julianna, for sure. She’s going to bring the challenge, and I’m ready for this battle. I’m more ready than ever. She’s going to bring the challenge, and I’m going to be ready to answer it. You guys have a great main event.”
UFC 289 takes place Saturday at Rogers Arena. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on ESPN and ESPN+.
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Apart from getting a better challenger, the UFC champ-champ feels fans also got an exciting matchup on deck as she sees Aldana as a dangerous adversary.
“Definitely, this girl can knock people out,” Nunes said. “You guys saw (and) me too. How exciting that can be? We’re going to punch each other and try to kick each other’s ass. I hope you guys have a good time.”
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For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 289.