Miesha Tate is on the eve of making her UFC return at UFC Vegas 31 against Marion Reneau. Tate has been away from the sport for five years but is confident that she will again be a force to be reckoned with in the bantamweight division. Through the first part of her career, Tate found success and was champion for a time. Although being champion again would be nice, she is on the sidelines looking in for the time being.
Another achievement of Tate’s UFC career was her time on The Ultimate Fighter. There, she helped shape the relatively new bantamweight division. One of her team members from TUF, Julianna Peña, is now fighting for a world title against champion Amanda Nunes at UFC 265. Tate is pulling for her friend in this fight.
“What will be, will be. It doesn’t matter,” Tate told MMA Fighting. “I will get there eventually to the championship. I think if Julianna wins they’re going to do an immediate rematch, which is great. She has a great style, I can’t say that enough. Those cornfed folk up in Washington, we’ve just got some kind of tough about us. I’m excited for her and I want her to do it. But if she doesn’t do it, I believe I will.”
The rematch with Nunes would no doubt be personal for Tate. Her loss was the crowning moment for Nunes and the beginning of her now two-division championship run. If Peña were to win, it is unclear if Tate would step up considering their close relationship. However, Tate did fight another friend and member of her TUF season when she fought Raquel Pennington.
“I genuinely want Julianna to get this fight and I want her to win,” Tate said. “I will be nothing but happy for her if she’s able to do that. There’s no part of me that wishes for her not to do this so I can have this fairytale storybook ending.”
Tate has a tough task ahead of her before she can envision a title run. She must first defeat Reneau, who is making her last walk to the Octagon and has nothing to lose.
Do you think we will see Amanda Nunes vs. Miesha Tate 2 for the title?