UFC Fight Night 105's Sara McMann has no interest in featherweight: 'I want the title at 135'

HALIFAX Don’t count on Sara McMann to add some depth to the newly introduced UFC women’s featherweight class.McMann, a former UFC women’s bantamweight title challenger, said the 135-pound division is the perfect fit for her. That’s where she wants to make her run toward the title, and despite 145 pounds being notably thinner on contenders after recently crowning inaugural champion Germaine de Randamie, that’s where she intends on staying for the indefinite future.
“I’m (not) like other fighters where I rebound up and get really heavy in between fights,” McMann told MMAjunkie. “I walk around at 147 (pounds). I would be small for that weight class. People thought I would be OK to go up, but they think I walk around heavier than I am. 135 is the perfect weight for me.
“I cut a lot of things out of my diet and I eat super clean, and I make the weight precisely. Every bit of my weight is functional weight. That’s the perfect weight class for me. I can perform the best but be the leanest possible. At 145 I would just be walking in like a regular day, and I don’t think that would be good when they can rebound up to close to 160.”
McMann (10-3 MMA, 4-3 UFC) won’t completely rule out a future change, but that’s simply because she’s of the “anything can happen” mentality. She’s focused on the bantamweight belt and earning a rematch with champ Amanda Nunes. McMann will look to strengthen her case for a crack at gold when she faces UFC newcomer Gina Mazany (4-0 MMA, 0-0 UFC) at UFC Fight Night 105.
“I want the title at 135 and after that, if they wanted to do some super-matchup at 140, I would consider that if it was a good move for my career,” McMann said. “My eyes are locked on that bantamweight title.”
UFC Fight Night 105 takes place Sunday at Scotiabank Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. McMann vs. Mazany airs on the FS1-televised main card following prelims on the same channel and UFC Fight Pass.After back-to-back wins over Jessica Eye and Alexis Davis in 2016, McMann, No. 10 in the latest USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA women’s bantamweight rankings, was originally booked to fight fellow former title challenger Liz Carmouche. Unfortunately, Carmouche withdrew due to injury on just 16 days’ notice, leaving the door open for Mazany to step in.
Although beating Mazany wouldn’t have the same type of impact as it would have No. 13-ranked Carmouche, McMann said she thinks a victory will still move her closer to the title. However, she’s aware that only rings true with a one-sided performance where she doesn’t allow even the slightest opportunity for her opponent to surprise her with an upset.
“I have had to shift my mindset to make sure the same tenacious fighter comes to the cage that would have come if I had fought Liz,” McMann said. “I’ve had to work on the fly with wresting and other fights and stuff so I can adapt to it. … I know my job, I know what I need to do, and that’s exactly what I need to do. It doesn’t matter who they put in front of me. I have to have dominant performances if I want to win the title. A win here, it will still project me to the same spot simply because of my ranking.”Prior to her current winning streak McMann had a bumpy road in the UFC. She was pitted against then-champion Ronda Rousey in just her second octagon appearance and suffered a 66-second TKO loss, which began a stretch of three losses in four fights. It appears the 2004 Olympic silver medalist has found her finest form to date, though, and she intends on proving that by making an example of Mazany.
“I’ve been doing it almost eight years, and I really like a 10,000-hour kind of athlete,” McMann said. “I don’t come out of the gates just doing brilliant stuff. It usually takes a lot of work, dedication, drills, and persistence. Making mistakes and working through them. That’s who I am as a person.
“My particular personality when it comes to fighting is I like to ware on people and use every opportunity I can to break them. That’s exactly the game plan I have no matter who they put in front of me. If you put someone who is less experienced I’m really going to amp it up and put a pace on her she’s never felt. I’m going to give her a proper introduction into the UFC and the level difference.”For more on UFC Fight Night 105, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.










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