Uncasville, CT — The first bout of Juliana Velasquez’s title reign arrives Friday night in Connecticut, at the Mohegan Sun Arena.
The undefeated champion is stepping in the cage for her first fight of 2021 at Bellator 262. It’s also her first fight since claiming the women’s flyweight title against Ilima-Lei Macfarlane. Denise Kielholtz steps in as the first challenger to Velasquez’s reign as champion.
“I’m going to perform better than last time,” the champion told Cageside Press during this week’s Bellator 262 media day. “Every time I am happy, good things happen. You can expect an exciting fight, and a very motivated champion.”
Since becoming champion of Bellator’s 125lb division, Velasquez said that not a lot has changed. Essentially, a few more social media followers, some more recognition but alas the same old lifestyle. The biggest thing for Velasquez has been the role model-esque persona that comes with being a champion: being someone young fighters can look up to.
“Very satisfying for me,” Velasquez stated. “I receive messages from the kids and messages from the parents who are my fans too. It fulfills me to see the positive influence and some people inspired by me. The personal journeys I’ve had, the death of my brother,” Velasquez continued. “I kiss the tattoo on my arm, all the struggle and overcoming adversity. My mother is struggling with depression and I’m able to inspire her.”
She’ll look to win over, and inspire even more fans when Juliana Velasquez meets Denise Kielholtz in the main event of Bellator 262 on Friday night.
Watch the full Bellator 262 media day interview with Juliana Velasquez above. The event takes place Friday, July 16 at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT.