Norma Dumont is committed to the featherweight division and she’s hoping the UFC follows suit.
Following a unanimous decision win over Aspen Ladd in the UFC Vegas 40 main event, Dumont has now won two straight at 145 pounds. Afterwards, she called for a possible interim title fight against Holly Holm after they were originally scheduled to meet on Saturday night.
While Amanda Nunes is cemented as the best featherweight in the sport, she’s set to defend her bantamweight title at UFC 269 in December and Dumont would like to keep the division moving in her absence.
“I don’t want the division to get stagnant and for us not to have fights,” Dumont said at the UFC Vegas 40 post-fight press conference. “I would be totally willing to have that fight [with Holm]. I understand Amanda’s going to do a title defense and then later on a possible fight with Valentina [Shevchenko] so we’d only be able to face each other by mid-year next year.
“So I definitely do not want to be not fighting for that long. I think a fight even for an interim belt with Holly could bring not just a fight for its own but to bring some attention to the division and to have other athletes come into the division with this particular winner of this fight to go on and fight Amanda.”
Holm was supposed to face Dumont, but a knee injury forced her out of the fight just over a week away from the event. The good news is Holm won’t be sidelined long with her head coach Mike Winkeljohn saying she hopes to compete again before the end of the year.
Booking a fight against Holm with or without a title on the line would make Dumont happy because right now uncertainty in the division is the worst part about her move up to 145 pounds.
“That’s the problem,” Dumont explained. “It’s a division that we basically don’t know who we’re fighting. I’m going to leave it to the hands of the UFC as I’ve always done.
“I’ve never backed down from a fight and I’m going to continue to prepare at the gym and I hope it is a big name and I hope it’s going to be a main event as well cause I thought this was pretty cool.”
While she previously competed at bantamweight, Dumont promises that her days attempting to cut down to 135 pounds are over, especially after she got some much-needed support from the team working at the UFC Performance Institute.
In fact, Dumont would like to see more bantamweights make the same move rather than draining themselves in order to compete at a smaller weight class.
“I’m definitely at 145,” Dumont said. “I made weight so much better this time and I want to thank everyone at [the UFC PI] for helping me out, especially Clint [Wattenberg], the doctor over there. I came in broken physically and mentally and those people put me back together and helped me be here.
“Because I was almost fired for what happened [when I missed weight]. They helped me stand up, get up and continue on my journey. I’m very thankful for what they’ve done for me.”
If Dumont gets the fight with Holm and successfully moves to 3-0 at featherweight, that would almost certainly put her on a collision course with Nunes in the future.
Nunes has arguably already established herself as the greatest women’s mixed martial artist of all time and beating her will be a daunting task for anybody willing to step inside the cage to face her. Dumont understands that Nunes has earned every single accolade on her resume but she’s not afraid to step up to challenge if that fight is offered to her.
“One of the things that we always say is not that we are ready but we become ready,” Dumont said about fighting Nunes. “After I fought Felicia [Spencer] and I understand now after fighting Ladd, there are three people in the division that could fight. If the UFC says I’m fighting so and so and I’ll be ready and I’ll become ready for that fight.”