One of the sport’s brightest prospects has taken the next step in her MMA career.
Decorated jiu-jitsu champion Mackenzie Dern announced Monday on The MMA Hour that she has signed a multi-fight deal with all-female promotion Invicta FC.
Dern said that her Invicta FC debut will be on Dec. 8 in a strawweight bout against one-time title challenger Kaline Medeiros.
Regarded a one of the top female prospects in the sport, Dern (4-0) was the No. 1 ranked women’s jiu-jitsu player in the world when she announced her intentions to transition into MMA in late 2015. Dern is the daughter of famed Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt Wellington “Megaton” Dias. She is one of only a few women to hold a tournament victory over jiu-jitsu giant Gabi Garcia.
A 24-year-old Arizona native, Dern has won all four of her professional fights under the Legacy FC and LFA banners, showcasing her world-class mat skills with a trio of submission finishes. In just her second fight, Dern landed on many of 2016’s ‘Submission of Year’ lists for her highlight-reel, first-round omoplata/rear-naked choke submission over TUF 26 quarterfinalist Montana Stewart. Last month, Dern showcased her improved striking game as well, downing Mandy Polk with a hard right hand before tapping the veteran with a first-round rear-naked choke at LFA 24.
Dern has openly set a goal of competing in the UFC by the end of 2018. After her win at LFA 24, Dern said she hoped to fight at least once more before the end of 2017.