UFC 271’s Casey O’Neill: “This Is My Time, I’m the New Era”

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Houston, TX — UFC 271 flyweight Casey O’Neill is happy to have a full house of fans for her showdown with Roxanne Modafferi this weekend in Houston.

“This is what I dreamed of when I signed with the UFC, was getting that crowd and having that moment in front of them,” said O’Neill (8-0), who joined the UFC last year, and has never fought with fans in attendance thus far. “It’s just nice to feel the energy of a proper fight week for once.”

What O’Neill appeared less than enthused with during Wednesday’s UFC 271 media day was the constant bombardment of questions about her opponent. Modafferi, a female fighting trailblazer, will hang up the gloves this weekend. The occasion has garnered significant attention from media and fans, but O’Neill herself is giving it little notice.

“I don’t care. It doesn’t change anything for me,” the Scottish-Australian fighter stated. “My career goes on the same, this is just another step in my journey, and what she does is on her. So I’m taking it as nothing different from the rest of my fights.”

O’Neill went on to add that “I respect everything that she’s done for female mixed martial arts for sure.” After all, she observed, Modafferi was fighting before just about anyone else was on the scene. “But this is my time, I’m the new era, and I’m going to show that on Saturday night.”

The 24-year old, fifteen years younger than the veteran known as “The Happy Warrior,” is ready for the Modafferi talk to be put to rest. “I think that people are forgetting that she’s lost three fights in a row,” suggested O’Neill. “She’s on her way out. She’s done great things in the past for sure, but I’m all about myself, and I feel like it’s been talked about enough now. We all know she’s retiring, it doesn’t change anything on Saturday night.”

While Modafferi has lost her past two fights, it seems like O’Neill is gunning to hand her that third loss on Saturday.

Watch the full UFC 271 media day press scrum with Casey O’Neill above. More coverage from the event can be found below.

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