In the pay-per-view’s one and only women’s fight, veteran campaigner Modafferi will enter the Octagon for one last hurrah. “The Happy Warrior” has fought 44 times since entering the sport as a professional in 2003, including bouts under the promotional banners of Strikeforce and Invicta FC.
Having fought nine times in the UFC since falling short of capturing gold against Nicco Montaño in 2017, a period that includes wins against Maycee Barber and Andrea Lee, Modafferi’s 10th walk to the Octagon will represent her last.
In her way of a happy entry to retirement will be O’Neill, an undefeated rising prospect who is riding three finishes against Shana Dobson, Lara Procópio, and Antonina Shevchenko into her fourth UFC outing.
O’Neill Promises To Meet Crazy With Crazy
After the announcement of her final fight, Modafferi detailed her decision to hang up her gloves and analyzed her final MMA foe. While she acknowledged O’Neill’s strengths, she warned the Scottish-Australian 24-year-old to be prepared for anything and everything come February 12.
But while “The Happy Warrior” hopes to end her year by trying out all the moves she’s kept in her back pocket, including spinning and flying manoeuvres, “King Casey” is expecting the same Modafferi UFC fans have seen in the Octagon nine times.
Nevertheless, if she is met with anything unexpected, she promises to fight fire with fire.
“OK, well, in my opinion, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks,” O’Neill said during an appearance on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani. “So I think she’s gonna come out and have the exact same fight that she always has, that she’s had for 50 fights now. So I’m not gonna fall into that. And if she wants to try to do all that crazy stuff, she better be ready for some crazy stuff coming back at her.”
While a victory for Modafferi this weekend would provide a memorable upset and add the cherry on top of what has been a lengthy and fruitful MMA career, O’Neill will be looking to send the veteran out of the sport in emphatic fashion.
If “King Casey” can extend her promotional record to 4-0 and perhaps maintain her 100% finishing rate in the UFC, she’ll certainly have a big opponent awaiting her next time out.
Who do you think will have their hand raised at UFC 271, Casey O’Neill or Roxanne Modafferi?