Ahead of Combate Americas Debut, Angela Magana Not Shying From Controversy, Still Pursuing Olympic Dream

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The always controversial Angela Magana returns to the cage at Combates Americas: Reinas later this month, and discussed her critics, opponent, and ability to elicit emotional reactions ahead of the fight.

It’s almost expected at this point that Angela Magana (11-10) will generate some controversy where ever she goes. That was the case in the UFC, and it likely extended her career there. Skirmishes with the likes of Cris Cyborg, her online persona, and outspoken nature have kept Magana in the spotlight when some of her more successful (in the cage) peers have struggled to capture interest. Ahead of Magana’s Combate Americas debut, not much has changed.

Earlier in the week, she posted video online showing a brief confrontation between herself and Combate Americas: Reinas opponent Kyra Batara. While it cut off a bit early, the grocery store confrontation seems par for the course. Neither Batara nor Magana were focusing on it during the event’s media day this week, however. Speaking to Cageside Press, Magana said only that “honestly I’m not really supposed to say anything.”

“The cops got called,” she admitted, but that was no doing of hers. “I didn’t call the cops, the security guard did.”

If it all feels a little similar to a prior incident with Magana, well, let’s just say that she isn’t backing down when it comes to speaking her mind. In fact, former rival Cris Cyborg is still a name she’ll freely bring up, and Magana isn’t shy about stoking to flames by continuing to refer to the women’s featherweight great as a “he.”

“That dude, Cyborg, he hit me, and you can’t assault people,” insisted Magana. “It doesn’t matter what anybody says to you. Sticks and stones may break your bones, but words will never hurt you. The fact that people get so upset, and so excited, the fact that I can elicit that emotion is incredible.”

“It’s just words. You can’t bully a fighter,” she continued. “It’s what we do. It’s not my fault, I can talk to anybody and I can say anything I want, it’s nobody’s right to put their hands on me.”

Magana’s critics like to point the the fact that she hasn’t won a fight in years, and rides into her Combate Americas debut on a six-fight losing streak, including bouts in the UFC and RIZIN. However, the strawweight made clear that quality of competition matters. “The last fight, number one woman in Japan,” she said. That would be Kanako Murata. Before that came Amanda Bobby Cooper, and Michelle Waterson, who is circling a title shot in the UFC.

Beyond that, Magana added that she was fighting “in a state that, I was very unhealthy. I had a blood disease that I just found out about. Now I get blood transfusions, and I get IVs, and I’ve treated myself.” The blood disease is something she’s spoken of before, which she has said lead to heart palpitations.

She is still able to compete, though, which brings us to her Olympic dream. “I was putting MMA on the back burner, because I’m on the national team for Freestyle wrestling, I’m a world team member. I’m going to try to qualify for the Olympics at the Pan Americans in August. That’s my main thing, is my wrestling, I want to go for the Olympics.” At 35, she knows this is her last shot at that sort of opportunity. “My main focus is wrestling. I made the national team, I made the world team last month.”

Still, when Combate Americas called, she listened. Magana was open to last minute fights while juggling wrestling. Combate offered a multi-fight deal, and were willing to work around her wrestling. She jumped at the opportunity.

Now, the plan is to get the win. “I want to get a win, obviously. And I’m going to win.” Despite that, she isn’t dwelling on her losses. “People think maybe you’re unsuccessful if you’ve had some losses in your career, but the thing is, that’s one night. I can go back home and I have my car paid off and my gym paid off and my beautiful house on the beach,” she explained.

As for her critics, “I don’t care what anybody thinks. It’s not my business.” She takes a similar approach to social media. Magana has never shied away from being outspoken, or using social media to promote herself. “What is social media for?” she questioned. “To gain attention, to take pictures of yourself, and to get people to look at you.”

In the end, she’s just using the social media machine for what it was designed for, Magana said.

The fight in front of her, however, isn’t playing out online, or in a Whole Foods. She’s got a tough opponent in Kyra Batara, but Angela Magana feels she has an edge. “I’ve been fighting since before she got her period,” she quipped. “So I’ve been fighting for a long time.” Thirteen years and counting as a pro, for Magana.

She’s also been staying active. “I’ve been competing a lot. She’s been out I think a year and a half, out of competition.” That might just give her an edge, especially combined with her wrestling.

Watch the full interview with Combate Amercias’ Angela Magana above! Combate Americas: Reinas takes place at the Galen Center in Los Angeles, CA on April 26. The event airs live on DAZN.

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