There might not be a personality more perfectly fit for Fight Island than that possessed by Amanda Ribas. The 26-year old Brazilian radiates energy inside and outside the Octagon, and while many people are dreading the extreme heat on Fight Island, Ribas can’t help but contain her excitement in regard to the scorching temperature.
“It’s a big adventure. Big sun come on! Sun and me, I love the sun!” Ribas exclaimed to UFC.com. “I love being here, it’s crazy.”
The only thing that might be brighter than the sun on Yas Island is Ribas’ future in the UFC, as she is a perfect 3-0 fighting for the world leader in mixed martial arts. All three of her impressive wins came in the span of nine months and now she’s ready to get back to business at UFC 251.
On Saturday Ribas will be featured on the UFC 251 main cardm and standing across the cage from her will be Paige VanZant. It’s a huge opportunity for Ribas, who knows that fighting someone as popular as VanZant can open some doors for her in the future.
The matchup with VanZant wasn’t always on her radar, but once the fight became possible, Ribas jumped at the chance to scrap with “12 Gauge”.
“Since she said she would fight me on Instagram and put a lot of names out there, I was interested in fighting with her,” Ribas said. “She has a big name and it is a great opportunity to show myself to the world. I hope fighting with her will help me get more sponsors and more visibility. I think UFC doesn’t want just a fighter; they want someone who sells, too. So, I am looking to do this with my career.”
During her short, but successful, UFC run, Ribas has shown the world that she absolutely is one of the top prospects at strawweight. Wins over Mackenzie Dern and Randa Markos helped her claim a spot in the rankings and now she is looking to make the climb to title contention.
She believes that journey up the strawweight ladder has to start with an exciting statement victory on Saturday.
UFC 251: Fighters You Should Know
Unlock MORE of your inner combat sports fan with UFC Fight Pass! Fighting is what we live for. And no one brings you MORE live fights, new shows, and events across multiple combat sports from around the world. With a never-ending supply of fighting in every discipline, there’s always something new to watch. Leave it to the world’s authority in MMA to bring you the Ultimate 24/7 platform for MORE combat sports, UFC Fight Pass!
UFC 251: Fighters You Should Know
“I am getting more big names and I’m focused on Paige VanZant right now, but I hope that in the next fight I get another big name,” Ribas said. “I hope I get the biggest name of my career because I want to be the biggest name of the year. I want people to look at my name and be like ‘Amanda Ribas!’. I have been looking all the time for this big goal for my life.”
But before Ribas can get to that point, she understands that she has to get through VanZant and she’s interested to see how she stacks up with the returning star.
“I think in the cage we will have a hard fight because Paige is aggressive and I am aggressive too,” Ribas said. “I have a big heart, she does too, so I think we will be fire in the cage.”
Make sure you order UFC 251 live on PPV to watch Ribas fight VanZant. The main card begins at 10pm ET / 7pm PT.
Visit Abu Dhabi: http://www.abudhabievents.ae/