Mackenzie Dern, a multiple-time jiu-jitsu world champion, made her MMA debut under the Invicta FC banner in 2016. She holds 5-0 in that promotion before she signed with the UFC. Dern scores a split decision win over Ashley Yoder in her Octagon debut at UFC 222 in March.
Because of her jiu-jitsu success, Mackenzie drew comparisons to the former bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey, who had a successful judo career before she transitioned to MMA.
Mackenzie is slated to face Amanda Bobby Cooper at UFC 224 on May 12 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Cooper took a jab at submission specialist, said Dern has ‘no wrestling’ and wouldn’t be able to deal with her kind of power on the feet when they meet in the Octagon. In the meantime, Dern happy to address her shortcomings and compared Cooper with her last opponent Yoder: (Quotes Via MMAFighting)
“She doesn’t think I’m good at all, basically. It’s OK. I think that Ashley was a harder opponent than her. Ashley is like southpaw, tall. Most of Ashley’s losses by decision, never lost by submission. All of Amanda’s losses are by submission. So, I think the fight with Amanda is gonna be a good matchup with me. I think it’s gonna be way easier than against Ashley, who is taller and everything.”
“I think most people are gonna be surprised by the punches. I know they think like I click the automatic and you just go a little crazy. For sure, I’m a jiu-jitsu girl, but I’m not scared to punch. For sure, this fight I want to submit — like fast. The last fight with Ashley, I wanted to like stay standing up. I wanted to get the submission, but I didn’t have a rush to finish fast. But for Amanda, I want to submit fast. I’ll be in Brazil, I’m a Brazilian jiu-jitsu fighter, I want to like show jiu-jitsu. So, I’m going to finish as fast as possible this fight.”
Cooper went 3-3 record with all of her defeats coming by way of submission as she prepares to face arguably the most dangerous all-time great Brazilian jiu-jitsu practitioner in the division. Dern appeared to outclass during her stand up; however, her jiu-jitsu game at the ground as expected allowed her to pick a narrow split-decision victory. While Dern seems assured that she will be a crowd favorite, her opponent, Cooper, is expected to face a hostile environment.
“It’s the first person I’m fighting that’s kind of talking about me, so I’m surprised. If it was in Vegas, I think it would be different. But man, she’s fighting in Brazil and she’s like talking a lot. I think it’s gonna be worse for her. … You know the ‘uhh vai morrer,’ they’re gonna say it no matter what, but the more she talks, the worst.”
“It’s OK that she thinks that, but she’s been submitted. So I think her ground needs to get better first before she says [something] about my ground.”
Between them who you think will come out on top?