Alexa Grasso proud to be first Mexican woman to fight for UFC title: ‘It’s beautiful’

Reagdless of what happens, Alexa Grasso will make history Saturday night.

The UFC women’s flyweight contender is set to challenge champion Valentina Shevchenko in the co-main event of UFC 285 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. It’s her first title fight with the UFC, which for any fighter is undoubtedly an important career moment. But beyond the personal milestone, Grasso (15-3 MMA, 7-3 UFC) will become the first Mexico-born woman to challenge for a UFC championship belt.

And for the Lobo Gym product out of Guadalajara, that’s something she’s beyond proud of.

“It’s beautiful,” Grasso told MMA Junkie in Spanish when asked about the historic significance of her title fight. “The truth is that it’s so cool. I always put it as a goal to do things well, do things right, and that’s what we’re doing.

“For me, it’s really important to be able to open the door for all the Mexican women who are coming up behind us. It’s beautiful. I can’t deny that I’m very excited, happy to be a pioneer for my country and do important things along with my partners. I just want to do things well and win that title.”


Video: UFC 285 'Countdown' for Valentina Shevchenko vs. Alexa Grasso

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Just two months in, and 2023 already has been a special and historic year for Mexican MMA.

Brandon Moreno stopped Deiveson Figueiredo to unify the UFC flyweight titles and become undisputed champion. Over at 145 pounds, Yair Rodriguez submitted Josh Emmett to become the UFC interim featherweight champion.

Now Grasso will get a chance this Saturday to bring a third title to her country when she faces Shevchenko (23-3 MMA, 12-2 UFC). She’s excited about the opportunity plus keep Mexican MMA on the up.

“Yeah, it’s funny. A lot of people would ask me in interviews, ‘What is Mexico missing so that the athletes can get ranked and be fighting for titles? What does Mexico need for the sport to grow?'” Grasso said. “I always told them it was a matter of time because the sport was basically new here in the country.

“But now you look at the ones who are in the UFC and everyone is giving their best and training very hard, leaving their hearts each time they fight in the octagon, and you can notice it.

“It makes me very happy to see my countrymen achieve their goals, show that it is possible. Yes, it’s hard and tough, but that’s anything you want to achieve in life. As long as you set goals, you stay disciplined, trust yourself, you can achieve anything.”

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 285.

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie