UFC Vegas 69 was in need of a new main event, so Jessica Andrade used the opportunity to secure a lucrative new deal with the company.
The Feb. 18 card was originally set to be headlined by Marlon Vera vs. Cory Sandhagen at the UFC APEX, but a change of plans left Taila Santos vs. Erin Blanchfield as the top billing. The company had to look for another opponent when Santos pulled out a week before the event.
Andrade accepted the offer this past Friday and signed a new UFC deal, one she said is significantly better. According to the fighter, she will make three times as much money for this UFC deal than her win against Lauren Murphy in UFC 283.
“It was something really good, a great change in my career,” Andrade said on this week’s episode of MMA Fighting podcast Trocacao Franca. “Now I’ll really be able to make my nest egg and plan my life. My body may not be the same after five to six years. But now, I can make a difference in my own life and that of my family.
“This is work well done from my part, but also my team, to be putting on good fights and always being available when the UFC needs. This fight has really saved my life in every sense. I’ll even buy my mother a new house.”
The former UFC strawweight champion and flyweight contender said her previous contract had 10 bouts, and her new manager Ali Abdelaziz advised against a similar deal.
Andrade stated that she is kicking off a 4-fight contract.
“My last contract had 10 fights, but Ali said that was crazy, that it wasn’t a good idea to have a contract with so many fights,” she said. “He said, ‘Let’s do the next contracts with less fights, but with you getting paid more.'”
Andrade said Blanchfield is a tough opponent, one who is ranked No. 9 in MMA Fighting’s rankings, so “nobody wanted to fight her on short notice.” But she welcomed the challenge.
Andrade said she was walking around at 145 pounds when the UFC offered the fight on Feb. 10, but she nonetheless expects a smooth seven-day cut to 125 pounds.
” People say that I am saving UFC [by taking this fight],, but I will tell you the truth. The UFC saved me numerous times before,” she stated. It’s a dual-edged sword. My back will scratch yours .”
if you scratch it