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Erin Blanchfield unbothered UFC main event opponent change

Erin Blanchfield after UFC 281 in Nov. 2022.
Erin Blanchfield after UFC 281 in Nov. 2022. | Photo by Mike Roach/Zuffa LLC

‘Cold Blooded’ was happy to accept a short-notice fight with Jéssica Andrade at UFC Vegas 69. 

When the UFC offered her a short-notice fight with Jéssica Andrade, Erin Blanchfield says she accepted it without hesitation.

Originally paired against Taila Santos at UFC Vegas 69 on Saturday, the up-and-coming prospect had to pivot to Andrade after Santos’ team had their visas into the United States denied. As unfortunate as the situation was, ‘Cold Blooded’ was fortunate the promotion found her someone ready to fight on one week’s notice.

“My manager called me and told me Taila was out, but Andrade was willing to fight and I was definitely down right away,” said Blanchfield at her media day scrum on Wednesday. “I already put in all the work and I really wanted to fight. Taila is a tough opponent, Andrade is a tough opponent, but everybody’s tough, so I didn’t really care. I was just happy to get a fight.”

With the new opponent, many wondered if this was a ‘bigger’ fight for Blanchfield, who has now gone from a former title challenger to a former champion. For the 23-year-old, there was no difference in magnitude between Santos and Andrade.

“I know a lot of people have been saying that, I guess because Andrade has a lot of experience in the UFC,” said Blanchfield. “She has a lot more fights than me or Taila, but I think that’s only reason why. Obviously, she’s super tough. She’s different than Taila, but I don’t think it’s necessarily a bigger fight like skill-wise. I think it may be bigger for people that know Andrade.”

Though preparing for a short-notice fight is less than ideal, Blanchfield says her preparation has gone through little to no changes.

“I think they’re different body types, a little bit different styles,” said Blanchfield. “It’s just adjusting to that. Andrade has to adjust to me, too. She just fought and she didn’t know she was fighting me until a week ago. We both have to make a little bit of adjustments, so I think we’re on an even playing field with that.”

UFC Vegas 69 does down on Sat., Feb. 18, at the UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada. Andrade vs. Blanchfield serves as the headliner.

About the author: Kristen King is a writer for Bloody Elbow. She has covered combat sports since 2016. (full bio)


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