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Thursday, December 2, 2021

UFC’s Mackenzie Dern ready for any fight

The tire still rests on the wall, a subtle reminder of how far Mackenzie Dern has come.

Inside the RVCA Training Center in Costa Mesa in late September, Dern ignores the tires and goes through his workouts: conditioning, sparring, grappling.

The two-time World Jiu-Jitsu Championships gold medalist knows she’ll need all three when she takes on Marina Rodriguez in the main event at UFC Fight Night 194 on Saturday in Las Vegas.

But 14 months ago, when she moved from Arizona to Huntington Beach and began focusing on improving her striking with Jason Parrillo at the RVCA, it was just darn and tire. Boxing Basics 101.

“That’s the one thing that my other coaches absolutely adore… I didn’t understand why I was doing something, you know? Just kind of left, right and you know, waving fists back, The seemingly always smiling Dern (11-1) said during a workout last week. Just working on my base and it’s pretty easy, you know? Like not hitting a tyre, bag or anything.

“And I felt like the first week, just throwing punches and being my base, it was easier for you to come. He really knows what he’s talking about.”

Dern, 28, will face fellow Brazilian Rodriguez, 34, on Saturday, who holds a 4-1-2 record in the UFC.

Rodriguez (14-1-2) is expected to lead in the legs. She made it to the UFC with a TKO win over Dana White’s Contender Series and in January defeating an opponent — Amanda Ribas by TKO — that Dern lost in her pro MMA career.

But on the mat, where Dern has earned four of his six UFC wins through first-round appearances, the edge is clear.

“I guess it’s no secret — get him to the ground. He’s the striker, I’m the grappler. But I’m also ready to stand and fight five rounds,” said Dern. “But I’m still fighting again.” I want I think I can take as little damage as I can, for all the scraping, brawling and striking, you might end up injuring a little more. Only then take it to the ground. Choke, armbar, maybe sleep, you know? No injuries and that’s good. So this is the plan. ”

Ten months ago, Dern hadn’t come close to mastering the art of striking, but he showed up to impress his famous boxing coach.

At UFC 256 in Las Vegas, Dern returned to his corner at the end of the second round, bleeding from his nose courtesy of a Virna Jandiroba knee. When he asked if his nose was broken, Parillo assured him that it was just a cut.

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Was it broken? Absolutely. Parillo dismissed the question and praised her fighter’s durability and toughness as she went out and won the third round on all three judges’ scorecards, which saw her win the fight 29–28 on all three cards.

“She went out and kicked (butt) in the third round. She didn’t go there and melt because she was worried about her nose,” said Parilo. “It’s something you can’t teach. It’s something that’s in his guts.”

Parillo says Dern has more guts than most people who trained at the RVCA, though the description is more southerly and graphic than that.

He watches Dern bring her 2-year-old daughter, Moa, with her to training as she balances fighting and parenting with her husband, Wesley Santos, a professional surfer.

And while Dern may be a black belt on the ground, the fight always starts on the feet and some of the women out there outnumber him.

“She’s done everything I’ve told her to do. And I push her as far forward as she is going because she’s behind,” Parillo said. “She’s still a little green on her feet. And she’s tough. So she’s just about to come into their world.”

Dern is coming in from an armbar submission from Nina Nunes in April, just 12 seconds before the opening round ends. It was Nunes’ first fight since having his first child with UFC Two-Division Champion Amanda Nunes. Similarly, Dern’s fight for the comeback — just four months after giving birth to Mo on June 9, 2019 — ended in defeat.

“I knew where his mindset was. Of course, I wanted to put pressure on the fight and I wanted to win, but I had a lot of respect for him,” Dern said. “I know he’ll come back even better. Will do I was thankful that we were able to share her first fight with another mom. ”

Nina Nunes’ tapout gave Dern a strawweight division-best of four submission victory. Her front end by submission would give her more than any woman in UFC history.

World Nation News Deskhttps://www.worldnationnews.com
World Nation News is a digital news portal website. Which provides important and latest breaking news updates to our audience in an effective and efficient ways, like world’s top stories, entertainment, sports, technology and much more news.
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