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Alexis Davis announces pregnancy, puts fighting career on hold until end of 2016

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Alexis Davis is starting a family.

The UFC women's bantamweight contender announced Tuesday on Instagram that she is pregnant and will not return to the Octagon until late 2016. Davis said her baby with longtime boyfriend and former Brazilian jiu-jitsu champion Flavio Meier is due early next year.

"I planned on spending as much time back home as possible to help with my niece anyways," Davis wrote. "But we are over joyed by this news and should be expecting our new arrival early 2016."

Davis (17-6) was coming off one of the biggest wins of her career, a second-round rally for a submission against Sarah Kaufman at UFC 186 in April. Kaufman had beaten Davis twice previously. In total, Davis has won six of her last seven fights with the lone loss against Ronda Rousey in a UFC women's bantamweight title fight at UFC 175 in July 2014.

Davis, 30, is ranked No. 3 among women's 135-pound contenders in the UFC. She owns victories over Jessica Eye, Liz Carmouche, Amanda Nunes, Tonya Evinger and Kaufman. Davis is the second female UFC fighter in recent weeks to delay her career due to pregnancy. Milana Dudieva announced two weeks ago that she was also having a child. There are multiple mothers on the UFC roster, though, including Michelle Waterson, Marion Reneau and Sara McMann.