Former UFC strawweight champion Jessica Andrade has opened up on why she needed to fight so often in 2023.
Andrade will be making the walk to the Octagon on the main card of UFC 295 on Saturday at Madison Square Garden against Mackenzie Dern. It’s the Brazilian’s fifth fight of 2023 as she’s 1-3 and on a three-fight losing streak. Andrade started the year off in January with a decision win over Lauren Murphy, and then just a few weeks later lost to Erin Blanchfield by submission at flyweight.
Jessica Andrade ended up returning in May at strawweight but suffered a first-round knockout loss to Yan Xiaonan. The Brazilian ended up fighting again in August and lost by submission to Tatiana Suarez. Although not many fighters get five UFC fights in a year, Andrade says it was needed.
“This year I had my divorce that has taken a lot of my money in paying for lawyers and things here and there, so I ended up taking five fights,” Andrade said on MMA Fighting’s Trocação Franca podcast. “It will be over this year, God willing, and I’ll be fine. [I fought five times in 2023] because of that, because of the divorce. I had to spend a lot of money with lawyers in Brazil, it’s too much bureaucracy…
“I was going well and then I made a mistake and ended up losing the fight,” Andrade said. “I need this victory now, of course, and I’m coming for it. Maybe next year I have the chance to fight five times again. Why not? But I think the UFC will slow things down for me [laughs]. But the plan is to have the opportunity to win two or three more fights and then ask for the belt, to fight whoever is the champion.”
Andrade also said that ‘maybe my losses also came because of that, for not being with my head 100 percent during the fight.’
Jessica Andrade is confident she’ll beat Mackenzie Dern
Although Jessica Andrade is on a three-fight losing streak and admitted she may not have had her head in the game. But, the Brazilian says the confidence is back and enters her UFC 295 scrap with a ton of confidence.
“Poor Mackenzie, it’s on her now,” Andrade said with a laugh. “This pressure of possibly losing four in a row is complicated. I lost three straight and I can’t let that happen. I’m hungrier than ever. I’m on a different moment in my career that is making me think about the things that are priority for me. This is my 27th UFC fight and I have to change my game, I have to change my strategy to surprise my opponents.”
Although Andrade is confident, the Brazilian is a sizeable underdog on Saturday at UFC 295.