Paige VanZant has a new home.
The former UFC flyweight and strawweight contender has signed an exclusive, multi-fight deal with upstart bare knuckle promotion Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship.
News of VanZant potentially signing with BKFC was first reported by Dizz on Twitter. Her deal with the promotion was later confirmed by Ariel Helwani.
I’m being told now by 2 different sources, that PVZ to @bareknucklefc is true.
— #Dizzology🇺🇸 (@TalkMMA) July 28, 2020
Paige VanZant has signed a new multi-fight, exclusive contract with Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship, according to sources.
More on the deal shortly.
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) August 12, 2020
VanZant also confirmed that she’s inked a new deal on her official Instagram account.
View this post on Instagram
“Contract Signed,” VanZant wrote. “About to change the game.”
VanZant last fought at UFC 251, when she came she lost to Amanda Ribas via first-round submission. The bout marked the final obligation on her latest UFC contract.
Ahead of the fight, VanZant made no secret of the fact that she intended to test free agency thereafter.
“There’s a lot of amazing organizations out there,” VanZant told the South China Morning Post in April. “If there wasn’t, I would never be testing free agency. I do honestly have a really good relationship with the UFC. I appreciate everything they’ve done for me. The hard thing is, other than my compensation, I am very happy with the UFC. So it’s not going to be as crazy as a negotiation process as a lot of people think. There’s a lot to talk about, but I think it’s going to be a fairly easy conversation.
“Change is very hard, but I’m looking for the best opportunity for my future and I don’t know what that is,” VanZant added. “I think it’s going to take negotiations with the UFC and negotiations with other organizations to know who’s going to offer me a brighter future. It might come down to other factors outside just a dollar figure. It’s really about who’s going to propel me to the best of their ability.”
BKFC has been on a signing spree over the last year or so, but Paige VanZant might be the most high-profile fighter the organization has signed to date. She joins a roster composed of notables like Artem Lobov, Jason Knight, Jim Alers, Isaac Vallie-Flagg, and Joey Beltran.
How do you think VanZant will do in the BKFC ring?