Tonya Evinger: ‘I Knew I Wasn’t Going to Get The Easy Route’

Tonya Evinger wasn’t counting on having an easy entrance in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).

Evinger had been regarded by many as the best female fighter not signed by the UFC. She’s gone 10-0, 1 NC in her last 11 outings. Evinger also happened to be the Invicta FC bantamweight title holder before signing with the UFC.

She’ll meet Cris Cyborg in her debut for the vacant UFC women’s featherweight title on July 29. The championship bout will be featured on the main card of UFC 214.

Speaking with Flo Combat, “Triple Threat” said she understood that her journey in the UFC wouldn’t include handouts:

“It’s one of them things where I knew I wasn’t going to get the easy route. I knew it. I knew they wouldn’t give me the easy route or they would have already signed me. The fact that I knew this would be a really tough fight for me against a top competitor. I just knew this was it.”

As far as challengers for Cyborg go, Evinger feels she was the best option.

“I just don’t see that there’s a lot of challengers out there for her at the time and I do feel like I’m one of the best. She hasn’t been defeated in 10 years. I haven’t been defeated in seven years so we’re kind of like on the same run. We’re both feeling good and doing great in the sport. I don’t see there being a better match-up for this card and a fight against her. I do feel I’m the best competitor out there.”