Over the years, we’ve heard several Brazilian fighters express disinterest in fighting their fellow Brazilians. This is not to suggest Brazilian vs. Brazilian matchups don’t happen – they certainly do – but there seem to be a few fighters from the country who frown on fighting their countrymen. UFC women’s bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes doesn’t seem to be one of these fighters.
Though Nunes is currently signed to take on Raquel Pennington at UFC 224 this May, there has recently been much discussion surrounding a potential fight between her and women’s featherweight champ Cris Cyborg – a fellow Brazilian.
In a recent interview with MMANytt, Nunes suggested that she has no trouble fighting a fellow Brazilian, so long as it’s all in the name of professionalism and competition.
“It’s nothing personal against Cyborg,” Nunes said. “I know she’s Brazilian and she said because we’re Brazilian we aren’t supposed to fight and things like that, but when you become a professional fighter, to become the best, you want to be beat the best.”
During a recent appearance on The UFC Unfiltered podcast, Nunes shared a similar sentiment, reminding that nobody complains when two Americans fight each other.
“Holly [Holm] fought Ronda [Rousey], Miesha [Tate] fought Holly, and nobody say that?” she said (h/t MMAMania). “I don’t understand why the Brazilian girls have to be like that,”
“This is a sport and this is a profession. I don’t have anything against [Cyborg] and I don’t want to fight her just because she is Brazilian. It’s to be the best. She is the best and I am the best in my division. It’s only about that and nothing more. It’s nothing personal, she’s been doing great and is the best in her division and has been on top for a while and I respect that.”
When we last saw Nunes in action, she picked up a close decision win over current flyweight number-one contender Valentina Shevchenko, defending her title in the process. Her next most recent win occurred in December of 2016, when she knocked out former champion Ronda Rousey in the first round, which marked her first title defense. Nunes won the title at UFC 200 in July of 2016, when she submitted then-champion Miesha Tate in the first round.
What do you think of Amanda Nunes’ take on the perception that Brazilians shouldn’t fight each other?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 3/14/2018.