Monday, July 4, 2022

Julianna Peña Recalls Besting Her Brother: “I Choked Him Out”

UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Julianna Peña once choked out her brother.

Peña was recently a guest on Barstool Chicago and explained how her childhood helped prepare her for life inside the Octagon. Being the youngest of four children, Peña said she took quite a bit of lumps from her older siblings growing up.

“My first fight was getting the crap beat out of me by my brothers and sisters. I’m the baby of four, and my brother was obsessed with WWE wrestling. He knocked our coconut heads together more time than I could count. I mean, the guy was literally so aggressive, and he had three younger sisters, so he just beat the snot out of us… Finally, one day I was like, ‘I’m gonna Hulk out, I swear to God, I’m gonna Hulk out,’ and that was the last time my sister touched me.”

As for Peña’s brother, the current UFC women’s bantamweight champion was finally able to get the better of him several years into training mixed martial arts (MMA). After being thrown into a Christmas tree by him, Pena choked her brother out on the front lawn — but it was all in good fun.

“My brother, he still beat me up for many, many years, up until, I think I was training for about six years. On Christmas, he threw me into the Christmas tree… the next Thanksgiving, in front of his five boys, I choked him out on the front lawn… I stepped on top of him like, ‘Winner! Don’t you ever touch me again, it’s over [LAUGHS].’ I finally got that redemption.. It was all in good fun. I’m literally like, ‘Thanks for beating me up guys, I made a career out of it now.’ They’re proud of me.”

Peña is coming hot off one of the biggest upsets in MMA history. She choked out Amanda Nunes, ending her dominant undefeated streak, taking the 135-pound title. Now, the pair are coaching opposite one another The Ultimate Fighter before rematching on July 30 at UFC 277.

Do you think you would fare better against Julianna Peña than her poor brother did many years ago?

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