Maycee Barber suggests that Rose Namajunas might be too small for the flyweight division.
After her dominant victory over Amanda Ribas in June, Maycee Barber extended her winning streak to five matches. This propelled her to the eighth spot in the UFC’s rankings in a highly competitive division. Barber believes that the increasing difficulty to climb the ranks in the flyweight division is due to its deep talent pool.
“I agree that the 125 division has become significantly larger and deeper,” Barber expressed during an interview on The MMA Hour. “Previously, I thought the 115 division was the one stacked with numerous talented fighters. However, now we see fighters who can’t make the weight or choose to move up to 125 because it’s easier, and they find success there.”
She acknowledged the stacked nature of the division, highlighting that it won’t be a situation where one champion dominates indefinitely. Barber noted that even Valentina Shevchenko, the current champion, has shown some vulnerabilities, making a few mistakes. She believes that all the fighters in the division are improving, ready to seize opportunities presented by those errors. She expects the flyweight title to change hands multiple times.
Maycee Barber hopes to be among the future champions in the division. However, she recognizes that former strawweight champion Rose Namajunas shares the same aspiration. Namajunas is preparing to make her debut in the flyweight division against the second-ranked Manon Fiorot in the co-main event of the upcoming UFC Paris event. A victory would place Namajunas in contention for the flyweight title and the opportunity to become the second woman in UFC history to hold two division championships. Despite this, Barber doubts whether “Thug Rose” will succeed in her new weight class.
“I’m not sure if she will do well,” Barber opined. “Technically, Rose is phenomenal and an incredible fighter. However, I believe she is physically small for the division. When I previously trained with her, she wasn’t the most imposing presence physically. She is a technical fighter with high skills, but there are several fighters in the 125 division who possess power and a relentless mentality to break their opponents. Rose lacks that power, and if she’s mentally off, she can be defeated. I think the power in the 125 division could overpower her.”
Barber’s opinion is partly based on her past experience training with Namajunas during her short time at Roufusport in 2021. Nevertheless, she acknowledges that her perspective might be outdated and that Namajunas has the opportunity to prove her wrong.
“Let her give it a try and see how she feels,” Barber commented. “I could be completely mistaken. In the time that has passed—I’m unsure of how much time she has had off—maybe she has gained some muscle, put on some mass, and completely proved me wrong. My initial reaction upon hearing about her fight at 125, especially against Manon, was uncertainty. It’s a tough fight.”
UFC Paris is scheduled for September 2 at Accor Arena, featuring a headline bout between Ciryl Gane and Serghei Spivac in the heavyweight division.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about flyweight division
Q: What is Maycee Barber’s opinion about Rose Namajunas in the flyweight division?
A: Maycee Barber believes that Rose Namajunas might be too small for the flyweight division. While she acknowledges Namajunas’ technical skills and considers her an incredible fighter, Barber feels that the power possessed by several fighters in the 125 division could overpower Namajunas. She notes that Namajunas is not a physically imposing fighter and suggests that if she is mentally off, she can be defeated by opponents with more power. Barber’s opinion is based on her past experience training with Namajunas and her observation of the division’s talent pool.
Q: Why does Maycee Barber think the flyweight division is becoming more difficult to climb the ranks in?
A: According to Maycee Barber, the flyweight division has become increasingly challenging due to its deep talent pool. She agrees that the division has grown significantly, with fighters moving up from the strawweight division because it’s easier to make the 125-pound weight limit. Barber believes that this influx of talent and the presence of powerful fighters in the division make it more competitive and harder to climb the rankings.
Q: Can Rose Namajunas become a two-division champion in the UFC?
A: Rose Namajunas has the opportunity to become a two-division champion in the UFC if she succeeds in the flyweight division. By making her debut in the flyweight division and securing a victory against a top-ranked opponent like Manon Fiorot, Namajunas would immediately be considered a contender for the flyweight title. If she goes on to win the title, she would join a select group of female fighters who have achieved two-division champion status in the UFC.
Q: When and where is the upcoming UFC Paris event taking place?
A: The upcoming UFC Paris event is scheduled to take place on September 2 at Accor Arena. The event will feature a headline bout between Ciryl Gane and Serghei Spivac in the heavyweight division. The co-main event will see Rose Namajunas make her flyweight debut against Manon Fiorot. It promises to be an exciting event for MMA fans.