Las Vegas, NV – UFC bantamweight Ketlen Vieira takes on another former champion when she faces Holly Holm in the main event of UFC Vegas 55 this Saturday night.
“I was very grateful when I heard her name (Holm). I admire her a lot. I used to watch her fights way before I realized my dream to be in the UFC. I watched her fight against Ronda (Rousey) when she shocked the world. For me it was a dream come true to be able to face another former champ I admire so much. I have a lot of faith in myself. That was the great opportunity,” Vieira said to reporters through a translator on Wednesday.
Vieira (12-2) is coming off a decision win over another former champion in Miesha Tate in November 2021. Getting past her admiration of both Tate and Holm in order to face them in a cage is something she has thought about.
“People say that you have to train harder and harder until your idols become your opponents. I admire her, I respect her a lot, but once that door closes it’s my dream that I need to think about. It’s my dream that I’m going to focus on,” Vieira said.
“I admire her. I don’t want to re-write her history. I just want to be there and get my hand raised.”
Vieira hopes to be the next Brazilian UFC champion following the steps of former bantamweight queen Amanda Nunes. She spoke on seeing Nunes lose to now champion Julianna Pena.
“As a Brazilian I’m always sad when I see a Brazilian girl lose. Specially Amanda. After that fight a lot of things were said in media. (I) am always sad people are not respecting the history and everything that the athlete brings to the table. Her (Pena) game was better that night, but as Brazilian (I) like to see Brazilians rise to the top,” Vieira said.
The rematch between Nunes and Pena has not been set officially, but the two are currently coaching against each other in The Ultimate Fighter.
“I cheering for Amanda. There are some saying that she might retire soon. (I don’t) know her plans, but I would love to see her retire as a champion. She deserves that because of her history in the sport and everything she’s done,” Vieira said.
“I’m going to cheer for Amanda.
Watch the rest of Ketlen Vieira’s media day scrum above. Vieira takes on Holly Holm in the main event of UFC Vegas 55 on Saturday May 21st in Las Vegas at the UFC APEX.