Julia Budd feels it’s her and Cyborg as the two top females at 145lbs, and doesn’t see any legitimate threat in Bellator at the moment.
Julia Budd had another successful title defense on Friday night in Thackerville, Oklahoma at Bellator 202. The Canadian featherweight champion faced jiu-jitsu ace Talita Nogueira, and after a slow start, she finished the Brazilian off in the third round. It was the second successful defense of her Bellator 145lb title.
Speaking after the bout, she told Cageside Press and other assembled media that the win puts her right at the top of the 145lb division overall. “I believe I’m right up there with somebody else,” she said. Of course, that somebody else would be Budd’s counterpart in the UFC, Cris Cyborg. “I definitely think we’re the two top females at 145,” Budd said of Cyborg.
One thing Bellator MMA can boast that the UFC lacks at the moment is an actual featherweight division for women. Thus far, Cyborg has been paired up with bantamweights moving North, and has yet to defend her title against a true featherweight. On Bellator’s 145lb division, Budd said that “the division already – it’s the best 145’ers in the world here. I believe that’s my sixth win in a row for Bellator, and I’m just going to keep fighting and beating whoever they put in front of me.”
Budd admitted she was a bit surprised that Bellator 202 opponent Nogueira didn’t immediately try to take her down, but conceded that “the days of having just one discipline and being really good at it have already come to an end. You’ve gotta be well rounded, or you’ve gotta have a really good idea of what’s going on, because you get totally surprised in there.”
“So it’s like, ‘I’m fighting a grappler tonight, and she was staying on her feet striking the whole first round,'” she added. “You’ve got to be well-rounded, and I think I’m the most well-roudned 145’er in the world.”
Budd, who also touched on the topic of returning to Canada for a title defense, addressed who might be a threat to her title (hint: no one). You can catch the full post-fight press scrum from Bellator 202 with Julia Budd above.