NEW YORK – Jessica Andrade is facing an unforeseen challenge, but she is unwavering.
The former UFC strawweight champion is on a difficult three-fight losing streak ahead of Saturday’s clash against Mackenzie Dern on the main card of UFC 295, set at Madison Square Garden.
Andrade (24-12 MMA, 15-10 UFC) endured defeat by her last three opponents, being submitted by both Erin Blanchfield and Tatiana Suarez, and knocked out by Yan Xiaonan.
Despite the harsh circumstances, Andrade is leveraging the three-fight skid as inspiration.
“I think there is a lot of pressure,” Andrade said through an interpreter at Wednesday’s UFC 295 media day. “Actually, more pressure on myself to turn things around and to have a different outcome. You obviously feel the pressure to have a different outcome going forward.”
“I think for me, I’ve seen so many things throughout my career in the UFC that to me, it’s more motivation to get back in the win column, motivation to have a comeback, motivation to keep my place in there. So for me, it’s more motivation than pressure.”
Regarding the fight itself, Andrade sees value in being matched up against Dern (13-3 MMA, 8-3 UFC), believing their skills promise an action-packed fight.
“I think it’s a great fight as far as matchmaking goes,” Andrade said. “I think it’s a fight that should’ve happened in the past, but it’s finally happening. As far as style, she’s definitely got an edge in the jiu-jitsu and her ground game, but as far as stand up game, she’s gotten better in striking, but I don’t think she’s at my level. I’m at a very high level of striking. I got that style against her, so I think stylistically this is a really good matchup.”
For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 295.
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