Felice Herrig is returning to her first love, boxing. Well, bare-knuckle boxing.
Herring retired from the sport of MMA last month when she was submitted in the second round by Karolina Kowalkiewicz. ‘Lil Bulldog’ was in the UFC for eight years and has competed professionally in the sport since 2009. But she has revealed that she never loved MMA.
Never loved MMA
In a recent interview with MMA Junkie, Herring said she never loved the sport that she had been competing in for more than 14 years.
“I never loved MMA,” Herrig said. “I’ve always loved boxing.”
This wasn’t the first time the now-former UFC fighter said this. During her retirement post-fight interview with the media after her loss to Kowalkiewicz, Herring explained that she loved training MMA but has always loved boxing.
“I know that’s really sad to say, and it seems like I’m a traitor or a fake or whatever, like ‘oh you don’t love MMA, you’ve been doing it so long.’ I know people are going to talk sh*t about me, like ‘oh no wonder you lost, your heart’s not in it,’ whatever,” Herring said. “People are going to say whatever they want, but I never loved MMA. I love it in training, but I really love boxing. That has always been my first love. So maybe everything’s going to just come full circle.”
It didn’t take long for Herring to return to her first love because precisely one month after her last fight in the UFC, it was announced that she signed with Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship.
— Bare Knuckle FC (@bareknucklefc) July 5, 2022
Free to compete
Herring told MMA Junkie that her BKFC contract will let her pursue regular boxing as well.
“Now there are a lot of other opportunities to make money and to be successful not just in MMA and not just in the UFC,” Herrig said. “I figured bare-knuckle would probably be on the horizon because that’s probably where I would make the most money, but again I also like that I’m not just stuck to bare-knuckle. I can also box, and that makes me happy just being able to do both.”
While the 37-year-old does not have an opponent yet for her BKFC debut, a fight that makes sense at some point is Paige VanZant. The pair fought in 2015, with VanZant winning a unanimous decision. VanZant has her next fight booked but don’t be surprised if we get a rematch in the next six to nine months.