LA VEGAS – Despite being on her worst career run, Marina Rodriguez is not ready to forget about the UFC title.
The strawweight fighter is determined to break her two-fight losing streak at Saturday’s UFC Fight Night 228 and make another run for the belt. Rodriguez (16-3-2 MMA, 6-3-2 UFC) takes on former Invicta FC champion Michelle Waterson-Gomez (18-11 MMA, 6-7 UFC) in a rematch on the main card of the event.
Rodriguez, 36, feels another win against Waterson-Gomez could get her back in title contention.
“The UFC title never left my head,” Rodriguez told MMA Junkie and other reporters through an interpreter at Wednesday’s media day. “There’s a reason why I’m here. I’m not here just to fight. I’m not here just for the money. The reason why I continue to do this is to be a champion. That’s why we’re here and that’s why we’re in this fight. We’re here, so we can get talked about again and considered at having a chance at the title.”
Prior to the defeats to Virna Jandiroba and Amanda Lemos, Rodriguez was on a four-fight winning streak and knocking on the door of a title shot. That run included the victory over Waterson-Gomez, which came in May 2021.
Other than a sense of urgency to get a victory, Rodriguez doesn’t think much else has changed between her and her upcoming opponent.
“The fight is the same in the sense that the two fighters are the same, but different because both really want to win,” Rodriguez said. “I think that both are going to need this win right now coming off defeats. The one that has the bigger will to win, the one that wants it more, is going to come out on top with the win.”
For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC Fight Night 228.