To close out 2016, Paige VanZant looked to capitalize on her August 2016 win over Bec Rawlings as she stepped into the Octagon with ‘The Karate Hottie’ Michelle Waterson for a highly anticipated UFC Sacramento main event showdown.
While many expected Waterson to look to use her elite level striking to pick VanZant apart, while looking for the finish, Waterson instead opted to take the fight to the ground and finish VanZant with a rear-naked choke in the first round to cement her place at the top of the UFC’s women’s strawweight division.
Surprisingly, former UFC title challenger Chael Sonnen revealed this week that VanZant would be training at Gracie Barra in Portland Oregon after she purchased a house in her home-state of Oregon recently.
Urijah Faber spoke to MMAJunkie to discuss VanZant’s uncertain future with Team Alpha Male:
“She’s probably going to set up a home camp in Oregon, and I imagine she’ll probably travel for her camps. I don’t know if she’ll travel here, or travel to L.A. But she’s welcome here, obviously.”
“I’m not sure if she’s planning on doing that here or not,” Faber said. “We spoke briefly about it. I told her she’s always welcome. That’s a better question for her.
“She hasn’t officially said, ‘I’m never coming back.’ If it were up to me, I’d have her training in here all year ’round and having guys watch over her. But she’s got a unique setup, being a girl that’s from Oregon, living in Reno (Nev.), coming to Sacramento, being in the limelight so much.”
Faber of course is currently retired, however he remains an active figure in the MMA community given his involvement with Team Alpha Male and their deep lineup of fighters.
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 3/14/2017.