More often then not, the competition continues to get harder as a fighter progresses through their UFC career. Despite this, Mackenzie Dern feels that her next opponent, Amanda Cooper, will be less of challenge than Ashley Yoder, whom Dern defeated in her UFC debut in March.
Last month, Cooper told FloCombat that she has been “watching Mackenzie for years,” and as a matter of fact, she hasn’t been “too impressed” by what she has seen from the 25-year-old. Dern will fight Cooper at UFC 224 on May 12, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. She responded to Cooper’s criticisms last Wednesday when talking at a UFC media lunch.
“She doesn’t think I’m good at all, basically. It’s OK. I think that Ashley was a harder opponent than her. Ashley is like southpaw, tall. Most of Ashley’s losses by decision, never lost by submission. All of Amanda’s losses are by submission. So, I think the fight with Amanda is gonna be a good matchup with me. I think it’s gonna be way easier than against Ashley, who is taller and everything.”
Cooper’s MMA record sits at 3-3, with all three of those losses coming by submission, the most recent being to Cynthia Calvillo at UFC 209. Meanwhile half of Dern’s six MMA wins have come by submission. For this fight, Dern spoke about how she wants to secure the submission victory as fast as possible in front of the Rio crowd.
“I think most people are gonna be surprised by the punches, I know they think like I click the automatic and you just go a little crazy. For sure, I’m a jiu-jitsu girl,” Dern said. “But I’m not scared to punch. For sure, this fight I want to submit — like fast. The last fight with Ashley, I wanted to like stay standing up. I wanted to get the submission, but I didn’t have a rush to finish fast. But for Amanda, I want to submit fast. I’ll be in Brazil, I’m a Brazilian jiu-jitsu fighter, I want to like show jiu-jitsu. So, I’m going to finish as fast as possible this fight.”
UFC 224 will take place this Saturday, May 12th, at the Jeunesse Arena in Rio de Janiero, Brazil. The card will be headlined by a women’s bantamweight title fight between Amanda Nunes and Raquel Pennington.