UFC's Amanda Nunes: 'I Undoubtedly Accept' Julianna Pena's Rematch Fight Offer

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVDecember 13, 2021

LAS VEGAS, NV - DECEMBER 11: Amanda Nunes prepares to fight Julianna Peña in their womans bantamweight title fight during the UFC 269 on December 11, 2021, at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, NV. (Photo by Louis Grasse/PxImages/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Louis Grasse/PxImages/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Amanda Nunes is ready to jump at the first opportunity to earn her UFC women's bantamweight championship back from Julianna Pena. 

"You guys think I'm going to go out unbalanced," Nunes wrote on Instagram. "I undoubtedly accept the rematch. Give me a little time to get my s--t together and I will be back better than ever."

The Brazilian dropped the belt to Pena at UFC 269 this past Saturday. The new champion made it clear she was willing to stage a rematch.

"We can do it next; I'm free next month, two months from now—whenever they want to do it, I'm ready," Pena said at a post-fight news conference. "If she wants to do a rematch, we can do a rematch."

Heading into UFC 269, there were questions over Nunes' future in the bantamweight division. She had fought at the featherweight limit in her previous two fights and seemingly had little else to prove within the bantamweight class.

Losing to Pena all but guarantees she'll continue splitting her time between the two divisions for the time being.

Both fighters have something to gain from a rematch. Nunes can gain a measure of revenge, while Pena can further legitimize herself as the champion by defeating the former bantamweight queen for a second time. Despite her loss, Nunes would probably be the favorite in a return bout.

Considering she was riding a 12-fight winning streak, the 33-year-old may have grown a bit complacent and failed to respect Pena's ability.

Her coach, Mike Brown, told ESPN's Marc Raimondi she "was a little out of control" and "wasn't fighting smart at all."

"I think she thought maybe in her head that she's just going to crack her and get her out of there or something," Brown said. "But she was just not setting anything up."

There are still plenty of hurdles to clear before Nunes vs. Pena 2 is made official. But working out the final details shouldn't be too hard given the mutual interest in stepping back inside the cage.