No. 7-ranked UFC women’s Strawweight contender Paige VanZant is already dazzling audiences on ABC’s long-running dance competition, “Dancing With the Stars” (DWTS). And if she proves oddsmakers right, then she just might be out of Octagon action until later this summer.
VanZant and pro partner Mark Ballas are in a four-way tie for fourth place after week one votes were tallied. Should “12 Gauge” move on to the show’s Finale, it would mean that the Team Alpha Male product is stuck practicing and filming the show until late May.
However, as a 21-year-old mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter coming off a loss should, VanZant declares (via MMA Junkie) that she’s willing and able to accept a tilt during that span … but on one condition.
“I definitely would accept a fight. I’m still training while I’m out here. I’d give myself plenty of time to finish the show and then go into a full fight camp. I’m not going to rush myself or put myself in a bad position. But I’m a fighter first, so I’ll be ready to get back in the cage. I fought four times last year, so this is a really good change of pace. I get to slow down and work a lot of technique with my coaches – I’m not going straight into a fight preparing for somebody. I’m really working on who I am as a fighter and breaking everything down.”
VanZant has plenty of room to grow at her age. It was little more than fourth months ago when the California-based contender was ravaged by The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 20 runner-up Rose Namajunas. She might have been bloodied and beaten (pic here), but VanZant was quick to admit she was simply outclassed and needs ….View full article
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