London, U.K. – UFC women’s flyweight is quickly becoming one of the most competitive divisions in the entire promotion, and with a new champion on top, the list of contenders is beginning to fill with Jennifer Maia believing she’s close to a title shot.
She takes om Casey O’Neill at UFC 286 in a fight she believes gets her closer to another crack at the flyweight title.
“Beating her (O’Neill) give me two victories in a row which regardless still puts me closer to, go up in the rankings again, and have another title shot,” Maia told reporters including Cageside Press through a translator on Wednesday.
With a new champion in the division in Alexa Grasso, Maia sees a path to the title for her now that Valentina Shevchenko is no longer queen of the flyweights.
“Regardless of what happened in the championship bout the best thing was it shook things up a little bit. It really shook up the weight class and opens up better chances for me to make it to the top easier,” she said.
First she needs to take care of O’Neill at UFC 286 on Saturday night. O’Neill mentioned in her media day scrum that she wanted to fight Maia due to her place in the rankings believing it would get her closer to the title.
“It’s an excellent fight for me too I think. So I trained very hard, I’m prepared for any opponent so she’s no different,” said Maia.
Maia has faced some of the best in the UFC and she’ll lean on her experience when she sees O’Neill in the octagon on Saturday.
“I think the biggest difference, she’s a good fighter standing and grappling she’s very dedicated to her craft, but the biggest difference is I have a lot more experience fighting great fighters (than) she does,” she said.
“And that’s going to play a part.”
Watch the entire media day scrum with Jennifer Maia above. She takes on Casey O’Neill at UFC 286 on Saturday night at The O2 Arena.