Mackenzie Dern explains callout of Rose Namajunas, open to matchup with Jessica Andrade


Mackenzie Dern is looking to face a former UFC champion after turning in the most complete performance of her career, with Rose Namajunas at the top of the list.

After defeating Angela Hill by majority decision in the main event of UFC Vegas 73, Dern challenged Namajunas to a fight later this year. When Namajunas will return to the octagon is unknown because “Thug Rose’s” future is somewhat uncertain. She stated to MMA Fighting in a 2022 interview that before donning the MMA gloves once more, she wants to bulk up and take part in various grappling contests.

Dern says she’ll be ready if Namajunas decides she’s ready to start fighting again.

“For sure, I follow her on social media and stuff, and I saw her do an ADCC regional [tournament] or something like that,” Dern told reporters at the UFC Vegas 73 post-fight press conference. “I’m a former ADCC champion, so I’m always happy when I see the MMA girls doing jiu-jitsu. But, for sure, fighting Rose is a priority of mine right now at this moment.

“I think it would be a great fight, it would be a main event, and a good test for both of us. So when I see her training her jiu-jitsu, I’m like, ‘Yeah, that’s not going to be an easy fight,’ but I think it could be a great fight for the public, and for us.”

Dern has now alternated between victories and defeats in her last four fights after recovering from a decision loss to Yan Xiaonan at the UFC Vegas 61 event in October.

If Namajunas is not available, Dern would like to try to avenge one of her most recent defeats or challenge another former strawweight champion.

“I would like a rematch with Yan, I think she had a great performance with Jessica,” Dern said. “I think it was a really close fight [we had], so I would like to get that rematch if Rose wasn’t available, or even Jessica Andrade — who is a former champion, too — but definitely somebody in the top five. I’m prepared for all of them.”

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