Multiple-time jiu-jitsu world champion Mackenzie Dern has inked a deal with Invicta FC, which could finally give her followers the answer to the question, “When are you going to fight in the UFC?”
After making her mark on the grappling world, Dern has shifted her focus to mixed martial arts, where she currently holds a spotless 4-0 record. Having skipped the amateur circuit, Dern fought all four pro bouts under the banner of Legacy Fighting.
Having inked a deal with Invicta, however, she hopes to use it as a short bridge to the UFC.
“With the opponent that they offered and to be on UFC Fight Pass, and to keep growing as an athlete and try to get the fan base bigger and bigger, this was a good opportunity,” Dern said on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour. “My opponent fought for title in Invicta before, so if I win this one, it will prove that I’m ready to go to the next step, and hopefully that’s the UFC.”
Her first opponent under the Invicta banner is Kaline Medeiros, a fighter with a much higher level of MMA experience than Dern, who makes up for it with her grappling background. Medeiros was on a five-fight winning streak prior to her last bout, which was a failed attempt to wrest the Invicta strawweight title from Angela Hill.
Dern and Medeiros will meet at Invicta FC 26 on Dec. 8 in Kansas City.
Facing her toughest opponent to date, Dern is hoping that it will be the bout that propels her into the Octagon, which is what she’s been asked since she made the move to MMA.
“I just had one fight and everyone’s asking about the UFC,” she admitted. “It’s a little better now. People are trying to grow with me.”
Invicta FC 26 line-up:
- Flyweight Title Bout: Jennifer Maia (14-4-1) vs. Aga Niedźwiedź (10-0)
- Strawweight Bout: MIZUKI (12-4) vs. Janaisa Morandin (9-1)
- Flyweight: Vanessa Porto (18-8) vs. Milana Dudieva (11-6)
- Strawweight: Amy Montenegro (8-2) vs. Virna Jandiroba (11-0)
- Atomweight: Amber Brown (6-4) vs. Tessa Simpson (5-2)
- Flyweight: Christine Ferea (1-1) vs. Karina Rodríguez (5-2)
- Mackenzie Dern (4-0) vs. Kaline Medeiros (8-5)