Exclusive: TUF 26's Sijara Eubanks Talks Battling Weight Cuts

Sijara Eubanks is going to be making her UFC debut at UFC Fight Night Utica, with the opponent on that night being Lauren Murphy.

“Sarj” was supposed to fight Nicco Montano for the vacant UFC Women’s Flyweight Title at the UFC Ultimate Fighter 26 Finale, but was pulled from the fight due to the effects of the weight cutting. Eubanks has now taken the steps necessary to make sure that the problem never happens again.

“Everything's different man, coming into the Ultimate Fighter house…I was walking around at (1)55 (pounds) because I was fighting at (1)35 (pounds). So the cuts were really tough and I really get my walk around down between the show and December, when I was supposed to fight Nicco. I went out to the PI (UFC Performance Institute) and I’m doing everything different, I’m running a lot more. My conditioning and my cardio…there’s a lot of focus on that, my nutrition has been totally revamped. After I met with Clint and all the guys at the UFC PI, we did a lot of testing on my body to see how I burn calories and how my body works. We learned a lot about my body and we started making some changes, I feel great man…I feel fantastic. I’m smaller now than I was fighting in December, so I’m already ahead of the game. I feel great…I love it, I kinda had that that at 35, I was good. Now that I’m walking around a lot smaller, I feel leaner…I feel like my conditioning has gotten a lot better and I feel faster, its been great,” Eubanks said in an exclusive interview with Fightful’s James Lynch.

Eubanks would’ve made her official flyweight division debut at the TUF 26 Finale, but the fighter did make weight for the exhibition fights as a part of the TUF 26 reality show.

The fighter did miss the opportunity to take home gold at the TUF 26 Finale, but Eubanks believes a title shot isn’t far off.

“I hope so (that a title shot is near), I don’t think there is too much they can say (after) I beat Lauren. I think that puts me right up there, in the media and from what I heard, they (the UFC) are trying to match Nicco up with Valentina (Shevchenko). Is that happens…it happens, it’ll come…my time for a title shot will come. I think beating Lauren definitely keeps me in the heat and right up at the top, I hope I can get the winner of Valentina/Nicco…if that match up comes through. If not, I’m gonna keep fighting and keep finishing girls until I get my shot back,” says Eubanks.

UFC Fight Night Utica takes place on Friday, June 1 from the Adirondack Bank Center in Utica, New York with Jimmie Rivera and Marlon Moraes headlining. Fightful is providing live coverage of the event, which airs live on Fox Sports 1.

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