It was the highest profile fight in the career of Mackenzie Dern at UFC Vegas 23 and it was her finest performance. Dern submitted Nina Nunes in the first round with an armbar.
The former Nina Ansaroff, now Nina Nunes, returned to action at UFC Vegas 23 in a key strawweight scrap against Mackenzie Dern. Nunes, having given birth to her and wife Amanda Nunes’ daughter in her time off, was fighting for the first time since July of 2019. Prior to her sabbatical, she’d gone on a four fight win streak before running up against Tatiana Suarez. Against Dern, she’d get another top contender, a dangerous ground specialist at that.
The winner would likely find themselves propelled into title contention, albeit with a few names ahead of them in line.
Dern blitzed forward with a combination to start the fight, pushing Nunes to the fence right away. Dern then pushed for a double-leg takedown and was able to drag Nunes down. Nunes tried to lock Dern down, but Dern quickly moved to half guard, then side control, then mount. Dern began working on an armbar and Nina was defending well, but there was over a minute left and simply too much time for the jiu-jitsu expert to work with. She eventually isolated the arm and got the tap from Nunes. A quick and big win for Mackenzie Dern, who is quickly shooting up the strawweight ranks.
— UFC (@ufc) April 10, 2021
Dern is hoping for a top-5 opponent next time out and is waiting for the strawweight division to shake out in the near future before narrowing down an opponent.
Mackenzie Dern def. Nina Nunes by Submission (Armbar) in Round 1 (4:48)