Bellator XXI featured the Season 2 lightweight tournament championship as well as some early Season 3 matches.
Amid the Season 3 competitors, Megumi Fujii stands out as being considered the number one pound-for-pound female fighter in the world.
Fujii fought Sarah Schneider at Bellator XXI. Schneider is heavier and very tough.
Many people in the audience didn't give Schneider a chance, but she proved that she could stand and trade and even escaped Fujii's mount a couple of times, which is no small feat.
However, Fujii showed why she is a world class fighter, and she expertly took the match to the ground and did what she does best: kept it there. Fujii progressed in the Bellator women's tournament, which will take place in Season 3.
After her Bellator debut, I was able to speak with Fujii for a few minutes about her recent fight, where she wants to go with Bellator and what other female fighters she would like to face.
Brandon Hinchman : Hello Megumi, thank you for taking a few minutes to speak with me.
Megumi Fujii : Thank you.
Brandon Hinchman : How well do you plan on doing in Bellator Season 3 in the long run?
Megumi Fujii : I will fight my best to give a good performance so they invite me back.
Brandon Hinchman : The TKO victory against Sarah Schneider was very surprising since you have never before ended a fight by TKO. Had you trained for that or planned it before going into the cage?
Megumi Fujii : I was going to try to submit her, but she was too strong. It was not going to work out, so in the fight, I decided I was going to punch her on the ground instead.
Brandon Hinchman : Would you rematch Sarah Schneider if you had the chance?
Megumi Fujii : I have a good idea on where I need to work, so if we do rematch, I want you to know, I will win again.
Brandon Hinchman : You mentioned you're training to handle heavier female fighters. Would you consider gaining enough weight to eventually fight Gina Carano or Cristiane "Cyborg" Santos if they fought in Bellator?
Megumi Fujii : I would love to fight them, but I have been trying to gain weight. I would have a hard time with them right now since I would definitely need to gain weight, but I would absolutely like to fight them one day.
Brandon Hinchman : Thank you very much for your time, Megumi.
Megumi Fujii : Thank you.
Although I only had a couple of minutes to speak with Fujii, it was apparent that she is very modest yet at the same time confident in her abilities.
As she slowly gains muscle, hopefully we will soon see her face such female MMA prodigies as Christiane "Cyborg" Santos and Gina Carano as she mentioned. One can only imagine how such fights would end.
Bjorn Rebney, CEO of Bellator, stated that he has assembled seven out of the top ten female fighters in the world for his Season 3 tournament, and the complete listing of names are will soon be announced. Perhaps there's a chance that Carano or Cyborg could be on that list.
With the likes of UFC vets Roger Huerta and Josh Neer getting involved with the organization, Toby Imada's inverted triangle, Fujii deciding to fight in the Season 3 women's tournament and Hector Lombard beating the UFC knockout record by knocking out a UFC veteran in only six seconds, Bellator has certainly made its mark on MMA.
And being that UFC veteran Huerta lost to the Bellator lightweight tournament champion Pat Curran only makes Bellator have even more credibility amongst fans from every MMA organization. Bellator is here to stay, and the more it grows, the more exciting it gets.
Good luck to Fujii in her upcoming matches.
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