Despite losing her last fight, UFC strawweight Paige VanZant has become a bigger star than ever by making it to the finals of ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars.” Her increased profile has led to an opportunity to star in the upcoming movie “Kickboxer: Retaliation,” as well as an offer to participate at a WWE event.
VanZant, however, recently accepted an offer to return to the Octagon to fight Bec Rawlings at UFC on FOX 21 in Vancouver, so her forays into other ventures will have to wait. She told ESPN’s “SportsCenter” on Thursday that, while she appreciated both opportunities, the timing wasn’t right.
“Fighting definitely comes first,” said VanZant. “I’ve recently declined to be in the ‘Kickboxer’ movie because I want to be 100-percent for this fight and train 100-percent. Filming that movie was kind of going to get in the way. We couldn’t get a date set that worked with my fight schedule.”
She said much the same when it came to professional wrestling and joining Ronda Rousey among the ranks of WWE favored fighters.
“Right now, I’m 100 percent fight-focused. I would love to participate in anything the WWE has to offer when the timing’s right, as long as it works with my fight schedule. I love WWE and if they ever reached out to me again I would love to work with them, but right now I’m focused on Bec Rawlings.”
UFC on FOX 21 will take place on Aug. 27 at Rogers Arena in Vancouver. VanZant vs. Rawlings joins an already announced match-up between former UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis and Charles Oliveira on the UFC on FOX 21 fight card.