It certainly took fans by surprise when Paige VanZant revealed that she would be signing with Bare Knuckle Fighting Championships. Now she explains a bit about her decision to make this move, and why she did not sign with another promotion instead.
In her time with the UFC, PVZ was not particularly known for having striking prowess. She was certainly adept in the standup, but most of her memorable wins came by way of submission instead. That is why, when she revealed that she was testing free agency earlier this year, nobody expected her to sign with BKFC. Nevertheless the announcement was made that this was, indeed the case.
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Paige VanZant Didn’t Go To BKFC For Money
With how surprising this decision seemed from Paige VanZant, fans were curious as to what made her decide to go there. The assumption was that she would fight in Bellator, where her husband Austin Vanderford also competes. However she explained in a recent interview that she fielded several offers, but ultimate decided to shed the gloves because that is where her passion lies.
“It wasn’t strictly financial for me actually,” PVZ explained. “I had three or four big players when it came to negotiating contracts. So I had four awesome offers to look at, and after I got everyone to the price point my manager and I were looking at, then we got to decide which one am I the most passionate about. For myself there were a few different things. I think everyone kind of expected me to go to Bellator because that’s where my husband fights, and of course, that aspect did intrigue me, I would love to fight for the same organization as him. It makes sense career-wise, I guess. But, the passion in me wanted to go to bare-knuckle.
“I feel like looking at my fight career, yeah I think I have an equal amount of submission finishes, knockouts, and like a decision. So for me, it was more about when you look at my whole fight career, the one thing that stands out above anything is how tough I am, and I’ve carried that through every single fight and I think the people who really make it in bare-knuckle boxing are the people who are tough. It’s a sport for only the toughest of the tough, and that’s where I want to show my worth and my value. At the same time, I get to utilize and sharpen what I feel is one of my best weapons and that’s my striking, and I just get to make that better and better. I may go back to MMA. We don’t know, but right now I’m truly passionate about this bare-knuckle boxing, and I’m excited to see where it takes me.”
🔊"The people who really make it in bare knuckle boxing are the people who are tough and it's a sport for only the toughest of the tough, and that's where I want to show my worth and my value."- @paigevanzant explains to @jimmysmithmma why she decided to sign w/@bareknucklefc 👊 pic.twitter.com/WsjiITQ9lD
— MMA on SiriusXM (@MMAonSiriusXM) December 22, 2020
That being said, Paige VanZant made it clear that she does not feel like she had anything to prove at this point in her career. She is just excited to put her skills to the test in bare-knuckle. It is going to be interesting to see how she looks when she makes that debut.