John McCarthy: Rose Namajunas doesn’t seem ‘energized by the fight game’ before UFC on ESPN 53

John McCarthy questions Rose Namajunas’ motivation ahead of UFC on ESPN 53.

Namajunas (11-6 MMA, 9-5 UFC) meets Amanda Ribas (12-4 MMA, 7-3 UFC) in Saturday’s main event at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas.

McCarthy thinks former two-time UFC strawweight champion Namajunas shouldn’t have moved up to flyweight, where she fell short in her divisional debut to Manon Fiorot this past September. McCarthy doesn’t see the same passion in Namajunas anymore.

“The real question is, does she really want to be doing this anymore?,” McCarthy said on the Weighing In podcast. “Because we always say, look, if you’re not 100 percent in, get out. It just doesn’t seem like she’s energized by the fight game. It doesn’t seem to be something that that’s where she wants to be. It’s just something that she’s good at. I don’t know.”

His co-host, former UFC lightweight Josh Thomson, thinks it’s a matter of opponent that will fuel Namajunas.

“We’ve had fighters on here before and they’ve talked about you need to find the right fight to motivates you,” Thomson said. “She needs to find the right person that motivates her, that gets her inside that cage and gets her going. Joanna did it. Weili did it. Jessica Andrade did it. I mean, like, certain fighters seem to motivate her, and she had her best performances against those fighters.”

Namajunas’ statements during Wednesday’s media day say otherwise. “Thug Rose” said her loss to Fiorot motivated her more, as she looks to claim a title in a second division.

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC on ESPN 53.

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie