Amanda Nunes will be closing out 2017 for the UFC when she defends her women’s bantamweight title for the first time against former champion Ronda Rousey at UFC 207. Nunes, who defeated Miesha Tate to win the title at UFC 200, is the UFC’s first openly gay champion and credits her longtime relationship with Nina Ansaroff for her success in the sport.
“It helps me to be calm because I know Nina understands,” Nunes told USA Today Sports. “She knows everything that goes into being a fighter, so I don’t have to explain why I am doing this or that. Sometimes getting ready to fight is a difficult time, but she makes it easy for me, and I try to do the same for her.”
The build up to UFC 207 has solely focused on the return of Rousey, who hasn’t competed since UFC 193 in 2015, something Ansaroff says is good because it allows Nunes to focus.
“Amanda doesn’t need that stuff,” Ansaroff said. “She has this drive and confidence that nothing is going to stand in her way. She doesn’t need anyone telling her how good she is. I have seen it grow over time, and she knows she is where she belongs, right at the top of women’s MMA. It is going to take a heck of a lot to take that away from her, whoever you are.”
UFC 207 takes place on Friday, December 30 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada with Amanda Nunes and Ronda Rousey headlining.