After two years off, Ana Julaton looks to make a statement in Bellator debut

Julaton Bellator

Ana “The Hurricane” Julaton hopes to make a splash in her Bellator debut.

It’s been two years since Ana Julaton fought inside the cage. The Filipino-American former world boxing champ got her first dose of MMA in 2014, competing under ONE Championship.

After alternating wins and loses in four fights, her stint at ONE wasn’t ideal. Yet to Julaton, it was an important step in her latest move to Bellator MMA.

“It’s a long time coming and definitely for the better,” Julaton shares with Dojo Drifter in an online interview facilitated by Bellator MMA. “I have spent the time learning the fundamentals of grappling and going back to my roots of Tae Kwon Do and Kenpo-Karate and developing my style.”

Julaton will be making her promotion debut this weekend at Bellator 185 opposite Lisa Blaine. According to “The Hurricane,” the opportunity to do both boxing and MMA enticed her to join the Scott Coker-led promotion apart from his track record with women’s MMA. To her, it was another selling point to fight under the promoter who she describes as the “father of women’s combat sports.”

“With the rise of Women’s MMA in the United States, there’s an untapped market to explore, and that excites me. Simply put, the fighter’s life is unforgiving and to get the most out of it, fighters look to fight on the biggest stage,” she shares. “What inspires me more is fighting for a company that has been around the game for a very, very long time.”

“So I’m thrilled and proud to be under the Bellator banner under Scott Coker’s regime, knowing that they opened the doors for women to fight.”

Scoping the competition

Julaton joins fellow boxer-turned-MMA fighter Heather Hardy, who has rose in popularity in her recent Bellator debut. The 37-year-old Julaton is happy to see Hardy’s successful transition from boxing to MMA, but at the same time, she hopes to share the cage with “The Heat” one day.

“Look, Muhammad Ali wouldn’t be Ali if it wasn’t for Joe Frazier, and George Foreman; Ray Leonard wouldn’t be Sugar Ray had he not fought Roberto Duran, Tommy Hearns, or Marvin Hagler. It takes two to make it in this industry and if you’re in a stacked division like I am in the Bellator flyweight roster, then there’s money to be made.”

“If Julaton vs. Hardy doesn’t happen, whether it’s in the ring or the cage, then that would be foolish. Who would want to miss out on a blockbuster fight?”

But for now, Julaton knows that fight will have to wait, as she still has much to prove come Friday night (Saturday, Manila time). And she’s confident that her years of fighting and evolving will manifest in her Bellator debut

“What can you expect from someone who’s won three world titles in boxing, has a Black Belt in Taekwondo and Kenpo Karate, spent 2 years in a wrestling room, and have been studying BJJ for the past year, and trains with grappling heavyweight legend Frank Mir?”

“Fireworks.”

Mike Miguel

If there’s anything MMA related going down in the Philippines, Mike would know about it. With a knack for photography and social media, Mike never misses a beat.
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