Amanda Nunes has ignored about every attempt at trash talk from Julianna Peña ahead of their fight at UFC 269, but there was one thing her upcoming opponent said that she took exception to.
The two-division champion has dominated every woman she met in the Octagon during her reign thus far and displayed a diverse attack in each of those performances. However, the ‘Lioness’ received little to no credit for said variety from the ‘Venezuelan Vixen’, who told assembled media during her media day appearance that Nunes has yet to be tested on the ground by someone of her caliber. Peña would love to exploit that perceived weakness and can see her ground game leading her to a win on Saturday night.
Nunes disagrees. When asked about those comments from Peña, she was quick to shoot down that assessment and referred to her fights against Miesha Tate and Sara McMann as evidence for why it could not be more wrong. Though Tate and McMann are well-known for their wrestling prowess, Nunes overwhelmed and submitted both women inside of one round.
“She’s delusional,” said Nunes (video provided by MMA Fighting). “What about her best friend, Miesha Tate? What about Sara McMann? Sara McMann almost beat her. Sara McMann give up in the fight. If she didn’t give up, she would’ve beat Julianna, you know? I beat Sara McMann years ago. I feel like she can talk about whatever she wants. I feel like she has to do that to bring all the attention. I’m going to tell her she can have all the attention she wants. All of it because Saturday is my night, baby. December is my month, so nobody is going to take this belt from me.”
Because weaknesses were being addressed, Nunes took the opportunity to highlight some she sees regarding Peña and her propensity to make costly mistakes in her past fights. The champ-champ explained that the challenger had been submitted by women widely considered strikers in Germaine de Randamie and Valentina Shevchenko at UFC on ESPN 16 and UFC on FOX 23, respectively.
If De Randamie and Shevchenko could submit Peña, then so can Nunes.
“Julianna has all the holes, so I can finish her on the floor as well. Germaine [de Randamie] finished her. Germaine de Randamie is a striker and finished Julianna Peña, so I feel like my game is way above all those girls she fought. We’re going to see what happens. I just need a mistake from her on the striking or on the floor, whatever she’s going to bring. I’m going to have the answers and I’m going to finish the fight.”
Nunes may be confident heading into her next title defense, but she will not underestimate Peña by any means. She knows that anything can happen, which is why Nunes is prepared for everything.
“I feel like when you lock that door in the cage, everybody becomes dangerous, especially for her,” said Nunes. “She has nothing to lose. I have to really be ready for everything she brings. She’s definitely dangerous. She’s definitely a very good fighter and I’m going to be ready to go. She’s never fought a lioness before.”
Nunes vs. Peña serves as the co-headliner of UFC 269 set to take place on Dec. 11 live from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
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