Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship President David Feldman has changed his tune on the importance of Paige VanZant‘s next fight in the promotion.
While VanZant has found financial success since departing the UFC in 2020 owing to the launch of her own adult content site, not to mention a venture into the world of professional wrestling with AEW, her attempt to remain on the combat sports scene has been less successful.
In two fights under the BKFC banner, VanZant has gone 0-2, losing her debut to Britain Hart last February before Rachael Ostovich exacted revenge for her MMA loss to “12 Gauge” in-between the ropes at BKFC 19.
With that winless record in mind, the BKFC president suggested last year that VanZant’s third appearance in the promotion is a must-win fight for her. Following the 28-year-old’s lost to Ostovich, Feldman gave a firm take on VanZant’s BKFC standing in an interview with MMA Fighting.
“Absolutely she’s in a must-win situation… I thought she was in a must-win situation in this fight but she performed very well,” Feldman said. “She lost and I still think that we’re in the Paige VanZant business. But with that being said, I absolutely think she’s in a must-win [situation].”
But despite those remarks, it now seems that BKFC could still be in the “VanZant business” should she fall to a third straight loss next month.
Feldman: VanZant Could Have A BFC Future Even Without A Win
Much of the attention at BKFC 27, set for London, England, on August 20, will be on the headliner, which pits hometown fighter Michael “Venom” Page against former UFC welterweight Mike Perry. However, “Platinum” isn’t the only notable American set to make the journey across the Atlantic.
Also venturing to England’s capital will be VanZant, who’ll face Chirasa Sigala at Wembley’s OVO Arena. Ahead of the intriguing event, Feldman spoke to MMA Underground about VanZant’s third promotional outing.
In spite of his past words, the BKFC chief suggested that as long as VanZant performs well, a positive conversation can be had about her future, even in defeat.
“I think it’s a fight that she certainly has to perform extremely well in,” Feldman said. “Like I said on another interview, if it’s a great fight and she loses a close decision, or something like that, then maybe we can take a look at it. If it’s something that she’s not in the fight and she’s not really competitive, then it’s probably the end of the road for her here at BKFC.
“But, you know, the one thing I like about Paige is she likes to test herself. She doesn’t have to do this… She wants to show that she can win. If she comes out and puts on a great performance and has a win, we have a great conversation,” Feldman continued. “If not, we’re gonna have a difficult conversation.”
Do you think Paige VanZant will record her first victory in bare-knuckle boxing next month?