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Miesha Tate: Avila win was as crucial as UFC title fights

Miesha Tate's recent victory against Julia Avila at UFC Austin wasn't just another fight for the former bantamweight champion. After facing criticism and doubts about her abilities following a two-fight losing streak, Tate approached the bout with a determination reminiscent of her title fights against Ronda Rousey and Holly Holm.

Tate, who returned from a five-year retirement in 2021, felt the pressure to prove herself once again.

"I just heard a lot of noise, and people thinking, ‘She’s done. She’s washed up. She should retire.’ And I really felt that, and in a way, that made me feel like I have so much to prove, much like a title fight," she explained on The MMA Hour.

Her dominant performance against Avila, which ended with a third-round submission, marked a turning point in her comeback. Tate's renewed focus and training approach, guided by her fiance Johnny Nunez and wrestling coach Kirk White, played a crucial role in her victory.

Reflecting on her journey, Tate acknowledged the challenges she faced in her personal and professional life, including her previous relationship with UFC bantamweight veteran Bryan Caraway. After redefining her relationship with MMA and assembling a new support team, Tate has embraced a more strategic approach to her fights, emphasizing her grappling skills and mental preparation.

As she looks ahead, Tate remains focused on her immediate goals, taking each fight as it comes. With a record of 2-2 since her return, she understands the road to another title shot will require more victories. However, Tate values her current approach, focusing on her personal growth and performance rather than just chasing UFC gold.

Regardless of what lies ahead, Tate's victory at UFC Austin serves as a testament to her resilience and determination, echoing the pivotal moments of her career and signaling her continued evolution as a fighter.


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