Julianna Pena on Upset of Amanda Nunes at UFC 269: 'I'm Not Surprised, Motherf--ker'

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVDecember 12, 2021

Julianna Pena reacts after defeating Amanda Nunes by submission in a women's bantamweight mixed martial arts title bout at UFC 269, Saturday, Dec. 11, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Chase Stevens)
AP Photo/Chase Stevens

Julianna Pena absolutely stunned the fighting world Saturday night, beating the legendary Amanda Nunes by second-round submission at UFC 269. 

The only person who wasn't taken aback by the result was Pena herself. 

"I'm not surprised, motherf--ker!" she said in the Octagon following the win. 

The result snapped Nunes 12-fight winning streak, with her last loss coming against Cat Zingano in 2014 at UFC 178. She had defended her bantamweight title five times and picked up the featherweight title along the way, defending it twice. 

In her incredible run, Nunes beat some of the biggest names in the history of women's MMA, including Miesha Tate, Ronda Rousey, Cris Cyborg and Holly Holm. The 33-year-old had rightfully earned her place as the most dominant female fighter in history, and one of the most decorated UFC fighters period. 

Luke Thomas @lthomasnews

Doing what Nunes did - standing at the top of the weight class and welcoming contenders one after the next - is the most difficult thing to do in UFC. And she did it better than any other woman ever.<br><br>Dominance is hard to maintain in elite MMA. Power changes hands all the time.

Pena, meanwhile, is 11-4 in her career and was fighting in her first UFC title match. She'd already lost to Valentina Shevchenko and Germaine de Randamie. There's no doubt her time was coming, but to take down the GOAT was another thing entirely. 

So yes, Saturday's result was a stunner.

UFC Europe @UFCEurope

The shock of the century! The biggest upset in UFC history!<br><br>🏆 <a href="https://twitter.com/VenezuelanVixen?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@VenezuelanVixen</a> has defeated Amanda Nunes to become the NEW bantamweight champion! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/UFC269?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#UFC269</a> <a href="https://t.co/EIIAO1GBWU">pic.twitter.com/EIIAO1GBWU</a>

Aaron Bronsteter @aaronbronsteter

JULIANNA PENA DOES IT!<br><br>SHE BEATS THE GOAT!<br><br>Incredible heart shown by Pena to stand in the pocket and swing with Nunes.<br><br>Unbelievable turn of events.

Ariel Helwani @arielhelwani


Greg Beacham @gregbeacham

Julianna Pena submits Amanda Nunes, who taps out with Pena on her back! Nunes completely lost her game plan and her mojo in the 2nd round <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/UFC269?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#UFC269</a>

Shayna Baszler @QoSBaszler

She didn’t just beat Nunes. She didn’t even have hooks in. She broke Nunes. We live in bizzaro world, now. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/UFC269?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#UFC269</a>

Well, at least to everyone outside of the Octagon. Nunes didn't seem particularly shocked by Pena's performance either.

"I knew she was a warrior, I knew she was going to come forward. I know she can get hit and still keep coming forward," Nunes told Joe Rogan in a post-match interview in the Octagon. "I just today, like... checked out."

UFC @ufc

Gracious in defeat, this isn't the last we will see of <a href="https://twitter.com/Amanda_Leoa?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Amanda_Leoa</a> 🦁<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/UFC269?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#UFC269</a> <a href="https://t.co/NnRf1WC2zu">pic.twitter.com/NnRf1WC2zu</a>

Let this be a lesson to the rest of the women in the UFC—do not check out against Pena. Granted, they may have to wait their turn, as a rematch between Nunes and Pena seems very likely after Saturday's wild result.