Cortney Casey has a tall order facing top ranked Claudinha at UFC Fight Night 100

An impressive 2-fight win streak gives Cortney Casey the opportunity to fight top ranked Claudinha.

[mks_dropcap style=”square” size=”52″ bg_color=”#1588db” txt_color=”#ffffff”]I[/mks_dropcap]n Cortney Casey’s first two UFC fights last 2015, she fought without a full camp and then competed with an injury. Looking back, it’s not the start that she wanted. She suffered back-to-back losses in her MMA career.

In spite of those defeats, her performances against Joanne Calderwood and Seo Hee Ham yielded post-fight bonuses. She believes that she was able to show a glimpse of what she can do inside the Octagon.

It didn’t take long before Casey’s efforts resulted in wins. She’s finished Cristina Stanciu and Randa Markos both in the first round. More importantly, she’s earned a spot in UFC’s female strawweight rankings.

“I think a lot had to do with time and being healthy going into fights,” She tells in an interview.

“My first fight in the UFC was on 8 days’ notice versus JoJo (Calderwood), a top 10 fighter. And the Ham fight, I went into the fight with a broken rib so we had to make big adjustments in camp with just one week left. But I felt that in both those fights I showed I belonged in the UFC and I was an exciting fighter in the division. We took what we learned in those two losses and we moved forward and really worked on developing strong game plans.”

Cortney Casey’s two-fight win streak earned her a date with former title challenger Claudia Gadelha. This is her biggest assignment to date and a victory will move her closer to a title shot.

“This fight is extremely important, but then again I think every fight is important. I think Claudia is a tough opponent I think she brings a different pace then what I have faced so far in the UFC,” Casey says.

“Right now I’m just focused on Claudia, but at the end of the day, the goal is to be a champion. To get there is have to get through Claudia which isn’t going to be an easy task.”

“I have made some adjustments in camp and in training to deal with such a strong fighter like Claudia and as long as I can keep my pace and implement my game plan, I know I can come out on top.”

Claudinha is returning to the cage since her second loss to reigning champion Joanna Jędrzejczyk last July. She has since moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico at Jackson-Winklejohn MMA.

Casey expects her to be a different fighter, far from her usual high-octane style. But as far she’s concerned, she looks to maximize her own strengths and bring the fight to the former title challenger.

“She is very strong and very aggressive, I think with her changing camps they are going to make some adjustments in her. So we are just focusing on the holes that I have and making sure that I can keep her at my pace the entire fight.”

Photo courtesy of Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

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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