Molly McCann is confident that a win over Priscila de Souza in Liverpool on Saturday will catapult into the big leagues and says that her Brazilian opponent will be “wasting a trip” ahead of their clash at the Echo Arena.
McCann is part of Cage Warriors biggest card of the year on Saturday and following Darren Till’s heroics over Donald Cerrone in Gdansk last weekend, she believes that a UFC card in her hometown is a realistic possibility in 2018, however she has set her sights on a Cage Warriors world title before turning her attention to achieving that dream.
“Meatball”, who has a 4-1 record, got the better of the experienced Lacey Schuckman in her last fight by unanimous decision, which was also at the Echo and her first under the Cage Warriors banner, and she is now certain that she is in a much better position now than she was before that victory.
McCann said: “It feels like an eternity since my last fight, so I genuinely can’t wait to get in there on Saturday. I’ve been grafting hard and this win will catapult me into the big leagues and I’m lucky enough to be doing it in my hometown. That’s like Christmas for any fighter to be on a card like this in front of your own.
“I’ve got Priscila de Souza at the weekend, who’s from Brazil and had 20 odd fights. She’s a good Thai boxer and has good Jiu-Jitsu which is unsurprising, but in all honesty she has got nothing on me, so it will be a trip wasted.
“I’ve fought in Brazil and they’re like scousers, in that they’re a happy people, but very tough and the only thing they know how to do is fight, so it won’t be easy, but I’ll have too much due to the level I’m operating at. Schuckman was a great fight for me last time out and I’m thankful I got that fight as my confidence has gone up as a result.
“I remember the commentator’s saying that if you look at it on paper, I might be a fish out of water, but I held my own and dealt with all the situations, so now for example I’m much more confident in my grappling, whereas before I was a bit nervy and overthinking about been taken down.
“After Darren won at the weekend, I know the UFC will be looking at coming to Liverpool, although Cage Warriors has the venue booked for February, so I will destroy her on Saturday and then I want a world title fight. Maybe in the middle of next year, myself, Chris Fishgold, Paddy Pimblett and Lee Chadwick will all be on a big UFC bill in our hometown, which would be massive.”
McCann is a part of a growing women’s flyweight division, which is becoming a big focus in global MMA at the moment. The UFC has just launched a division in the latest edition of the Ultimate Fighter where the winner on the December 1st Finale will be the inaugural champion.
However, McCann is holding off on throwing her name into the mix until she has won a title in Cage Warriors. She also gave an insight into her views on weight cutting, which is a more prevalent issue than ever in the sport with more attention than ever on the most gruelling part of the sport.
“The flyweight division is finally getting some focus now with TUF, which I could have been a part of, but I really want to win that title before I go over to the UFC. There is no one in the 125lb division who can live me and I could put any of them to sleep on any given day, even my worst.
“The UFC know who I am and have been in contact, but I want to reach this goal of becoming a world champion first. I’m just cutting those final few pounds now, which has got a lot of attention, although what you see for example with Cris Cyborg and Chris Weidman is the worst you could actually see and any other cut isn’t spoke about. Weight cutting gets a lot of bad press.
“I’m a former ABA champion and I know that most boxers are out on fight week, draining themselves by running everyday, whereas with MMA fighters, it’s a lot more scientific, with the re-hydrating.
“You can put the big cuts down to less weight classes, but I believe that is a misconception because if boxing had the same amount of divisions, they would be doing exactly the same. We’ll see what happens next year when the new weight classes come in.”