The women’s bantamweight division has been in need of a new champion since Amanda Nunes retired in June 2023. On UFC 297 the promotion will finally crown a new champ as Mayra Bueno Silva and Raquel Pennington will square off for the title.
The bantamweight division has been lacking a fighter with star quality since Nunes retired, and in comparison to the red-hot strawweight and bantamweight divisions, the 135 weight class pretty much had the same fighters in the top for many years.
The reception for the title fight between Bueno Silva and Pennington might have been lukewarm at the best. In fact, the Brazilian challenger is not sold on the fight herself.
“On paper, it’s not a good fight because nobody wants to watch this fight – I know,” Bueno Silva recently told Middle Easy. “This fight on paper is no good. But I promise I will give a big show for everybody. Everybody (will go) home and think about, ‘Hey, this girl Mayra Bueno Silva is the chosen one.’”
“I will knock her out – I believe this,” Bueno Silva said. “I believe – 100 percent.”
Mayra Bueno Silva claims to be better than Peña
Even though she’s not so impressed by the matchup, Mayra Bueno Silva still thinks that Pennington is a harder fight than former champion Julianna Peña, who wanted a shot at the vacant title.
“Raquel is more tough than Julianna. Julianna is easy money,” Bueno Silva said. “I think she’s tough. She has good boxing, but doesn’t have good jiu-jitsu or a good takedown. I think I’m better than her in everything, but she’s tough. It’s hard to hurt her.”
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