clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Angela Hill: UFC strawweight class has separate division for fighters ‘there to look cute’

UFC 188 media day photos
Angela Hill thinks there are two UFC women’s strawweight divisions.
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

The UFC debuted a women’s strawweight division in 2014. Angela Hill actually sees two separate weight classes at 115 pounds in the UFC.

Hill, who is making her return to the promotion at UFC Fight Night: Bermudez vs. Korean Zombie on Saturday in Houston, believes there are the women’s strawweight fighters there to be legitimate fighters and others there to attract viewers due to their looks, she told Ariel Helwani on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour.

Hill said it was “cute” that a women’s strawweight fight between Alexa Grasso and Felice Herrig was the co-main event of this weekend’s card, rather than her fight with Andrade, which arguably has more title implications. Andrade is highly ranked and Hill is the Invicta FC women’s strawweight champion.

“I think there’s definitely two different weight classes in the strawweight division,” Hill said. “There’s a few floaters, there’s a few people who are in both. There are people who are there to fight and look professional when they fight and then there’s the people who are there to look cute. I think Felice and Grasso actually float between both groups. But the ones that are there to mainly look cute, they get top billing.”

There’s one fighter in particular that pops into Hill’s head when discussing the “different weight classes” — Paige VanZant, who has headlined two UFC events early in her career.

“Everyone knows who’s in those categories,” Hill said. “Look at VanZant. She headlined maybe two or three events. And she’s lost to the same people that I’ve lost to. It’s strange that you would keep headlining someone unless that was going on. There’s two different types. They’re bringing in one to bring the eyes in, but then the other to still look like a legitimate weight class.”

Hill (6-2) was vocal when she was given two elite strawweight fighters, Tecia Torres and Rose Namajunas, after beating Emily Kagan by TKO to begin her first UFC run coming off The Ultimate Fighter 20. She believes fighters like VanZant and Kailin Curran are given more favorable matchups and spots on the card, because they’re in that other weight class — which Hill said she could be a part of, too.

“I think I can float between both,” Hill said with a laugh. “I think I’m pretty cute, too. But you know, I’m gonna get the tougher fights as opposed to someone like VanZant, someone like Curran, the people that are there to just bring in eyes and make the sport popular by saying, ‘Oh look, she’s cute and she’s a fighter, too — you’d never guess!’”

Hill (6-2) went 4-0 in Invicta after being released by the UFC in late 2015. She won the Invicta belt by beating Livia Renata Souza last May and defended it against Kaline Medeiros in November. “Overkill” said she’ll angle for a UFC title shot against Joanna Jedrzejczyk if she beats Andrade. She is not upset that her bout is not the co-headliner, but believes it would have been more logical than Grasso vs. Herrig.

“I’m not mad that I’m not co-main event,” Hill said. “I think it would have made sense for my fight to be co-main event, simply because I’m fighting the No. 5-ranked strawweight who everyone is saying … she’s next in line for Joanna.”

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the MMA Fighting Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your fighting news from MMA Fighting