Maycee Barber’s 2020 did not go the way she envisioned.
In January at UFC 246, Barber was looking to improve to 9-0 when she took on Roxanne Modafferi. The goal for the 22-year-old was to beat Modafferi, get another win in the summer and fight for the belt at year’s end. Unfortunately for her, she lost the fight by decision and tore her ACL which has kept her out of action for the remainder of the year.
“That loss sucked to get injured but the loss is not disappointing,” Barber said on Just Scrap Radio on BJPENN.com. “What was worse is the fact I lost a fight and couldn’t come back right away because of the injury. Not disappointing because it is part of the journey and part of the story.”
During the rehab process, Barber also switched camps as she left Roufusport to go to Chicago. In the windy city, she is training with Mike Valle and Izzy Martinez which she says is a much better fit for her.
While recovering the knee, Barber set out a goal of fighting in December to fight in the same year she tore her ACL. However, that did not come to fruition and for “The Future” she believes that was the smart decision.
“I did want to fight, tear my ACL and fight in the same year and have that be the story of fighting twice in a year and tearing my ACL in between. However, this injury, I don’t ever want to go through this again it sucked and it still sucks,” Barber explained. “There were a lot of ups and downs and I wouldn’t trade it for the world but at the same time, it sucked. Being able to take the extra two months is the smarter thing for my career especially at 22-years-old.”
Now, Maycee Barber is set to return to the Octagon at UFC 258 against rising prospect, Alexa Grasso. It is a very intriguing fight, and one Barber figured would happen sooner or later.
“We had our eye on her but it’s also who the UFC offered. It was the first offer they gave us, I have never turned down a fight,” Baber said. “Just like I have a plan, I know the UFC has a plan. If they say Alexa Grasso there is definitely a reason behind it. I think that is the right way to go. In my division and for me in my career, I shouldn’t be afraid to fight anybody and I never have been. If you offer me Alexa Grasso most likely I’m going to take Alexa Grasso.”
Entering the fight, Maycee Barber is putting a lot of pressure on herself. The 22-year-old knows she has to return to the win column and plans to silence the critics.
“There is time to prove everyone wrong. I don’t feel like there is a lot of pressure on me from the outside world but I have put a lot of pressure on myself. This is one of the biggest fights of my career. Every fight is important and every fight is the biggest fight of my life when it is going to happen. A comeback from an injury and a comeback from a loss is huge. Those two put together I’m taking it 100 percent, everything I got. This is an important fight for me and I’m putting a lot of pressure on myself,” Barber concluded.
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