Good day fight fans. I have a rock star interview for you today. I will be sitting down with Bellator featherweight champion Julia “The Jewel” Budd, who is currently ranked #2 in our women’s featherweight rankings. March 3 she defeated Marloes Coenen at Bellator 174 via TKO(punches) 2:42 in round four. Let’s have a seat and talk with the champ.
First and foremost I want to congratulate Julia on her recent win at and title.
Nick: How does it feel to be the new champion?
Julia: It still feels surreal. I’m so happy and I’ve been preparing for this moment for so long that it doesn’t feel real. I’m excited about this new chapter as champion.
Nick: What belts do you currently hold?
Julia: I have 2 belts in Muay Thai and I’m a MMA world champion.
Nick: How long have you been with Gibson Kickboxing & Pankration?
Julia: Since 2002
Nick: Your nickname is The Jewel. Who gave you that name? Why?
Julia: My coach and now my husband Lance Gibson gave it to me. I was the only female fighter out of gibson mma so I was their jewel.
Nick: What would you say your biggest strengths are?
Julia: My strength, determination and my entwine MMA game. I feel like I’m very well rounded.
Nick: What’s your favorite strike/submission to use in any fight?
Julia: I like my jab, my push kicks and ground and pound.
Nick: People talk about the next generation of fighters. Do you feel that you represent that in some ways? Do you feel any pressure to represent that next generation while being the champion?
Julia: Not so much. I feel like it’s an ever evolving sport and that the pressure is more to continue to polish my skills and my weapons so I can remain on top.
Nick: With cutting weight and fighter safety always being a priority. What methods of cutting weight do you use? How much weight do you usually have to cut before a fight? Do you feel the weight cut has a major impact on your strength before a fight?
Julia: I cut between 10-15 pounds. And I don’t. I stay healthy and strong all year round. It’s a lifestyle for me and we’ve got it down to a science now. So I never really feel affected.
Nick: You understand that marketing is important in this sport. What advice/tips would you give young up and coming fighters on the balance of presenting yourself based on beauty vs. brawn or skill alone?
Julia: I think that being yourself and showing who you truly are is what makes you marketable. As a woman there is nothing wrong with showing your feminine side as well as your beastmode
Nick: At Bellator 174 you had dominant victory over a tough competitor. Before stepping into the cage did you see the fight going the way it did?
Julia: Honestly I didn’t exactly know. Before the fight I was having so many conversations with myself and I really feel like I let go. The belt wasn’t even a focus. I wanted a top performance and I actually felt like if I lost but gave it my 100% I would have been proud of myself. So that’s what I committed and To. Giving my 100% all.
Nick: You are ranked as the number 2 featherweight in the world via TheMMATakeover.com rankings. How do you feel that you match up with the other fighters in the top 3 which would be Cris Cyborg and Germaine de Randamie?
Julia: I feel like I’m at the very top and I already beat Germaine.
Nick: What are your thoughts on the growth of the featherweight division seeing that you are one of the first champions in the weight class?
Julia: I think that we have a great division and it’s only getting bigger and better.
Nick: What do you say to people out there who thinks that there are not enough woman to fight in that division?
Julia: I disregard it because it’s negative- and I feel like it’s bizarre that people shoot this division down.
Nick: Would you like to see a season of the Ultimate Fighter showcasing the women’s featherweight division?
Julia: Totally- the more promotion the better.
Nick: If it were to happen would you be willing to be a coach should the promotions collaborate to build the weight class?
Julia: Oh yeah but I don’t think Bellator and UFC will collaborate any time soon.
Nick: What are your thoughts on the Ronda Rousey situation? Do you think she will fight again?
Julia: I can’t speak for anyone else but I think it’s definitely possible she fights again. She’s a warrior.
Nick: Do you know when you will be fighting again? And against who? I know that you have a large following of fans that would like the answer to this one.
Julia: I don’t know yet but I’m already training again and I have the itch to get back in there already.
Nick: If you could have one dream fight with anyone, who would it be?
Julia: Hmmmmm… Probably a rematch with Amanda Nunes.
What can I say about this. She is a fan favorite with all the skill in the world. You can also call her the featherweight world champion which is very well earned. I have to thank Julia for taking a little of her time to sit and talk with me. I wish her all the best and can not wait for her to get in the cage again. This is Nick Portella on behalf of TheMMATakeover.com signing off.