If Angela Hill beats Jessica Andrade this weekend, expect some words directed at Joanna Jedrzejczyk.
Hill told Ariel Helwani on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour that he plans on challenging the UFC women’s strawweight champion if she gets interviewed in the Octagon following the bout. In Hill’s mind, Jedrzejczyk presents a less difficult matchup than Andrade does.
“I’m gonna call her out,” Hill said. “I’m totally gonna call her out. I feel like for me, Joanna is an easier fight. Just because she’s not gonna go for takedowns. At least not at first. That’s not gonna be her Plan A. Everyone I’ve fought since my first fight, their Plan A has been to take me down and submit me. So it’s gonna be a relief for me. I’ll be able to actually chill and open up in my striking and doing what I’m a little more used to doing.”
Hill (6-2), the current Invicta FC champion, will be making her return to the UFC against Andrade at UFC Fight Night: Bermudez vs. Korean Zombie on Saturday night in Houston. The Muay Thai champion came into the UFC with just one pro fight and one exhibition on The Ultimate Fighter 20 in 2014. She went 1-2 and was released by the promotion in late 2015.
Since then — and since moving to San Diego to train at Alliance MMA — Hill has been on a tear. Hill, 30, won two in a row to earn an Invicta title shot and then defeated Livia Renata Souza for the title last May. “Overkill” defended the title via unanimous decision against Kaline Medeiros in November.
Hill was supposed to fight Andrade at UFC 207 last month, but a provision in the UFC’s anti-doping policy says a fighter returning to the organization must be in the USADA drug-testing pool for four months before stepping back in the Octagon. That rule was waived for her earlier this month, because it was not her choice to leave the UFC and the drug-testing pool in the first place.
Many felt a fight with Andrade was another difficult matchup, just like the ones she was given in her first UFC run, against top strawweights like Tecia Torres and Rose Namajunas. Hill disagrees. Andrade, who is soon in line for a title shot, is obviously very good, but Hill thinks she has the edge. That’s why she didn’t mind the bout on short notice at UFC 207.
“She’s tough, but I still feel like she’s a bit overrated and I felt like i could really make a statement just by fighting her, beating her and doing it all within 2016,” Hill said.
Hill believes she’ll have an advantage standing up against Andrade and isn’t sure how much the tough weight cut will affect the former bantamweight fighter.
“I just think I’m a better striker,” Hill said. “I think I’m more elusive. She kind of comes forward with heavy hits. I think I definitely hit harder than what she’s been hit with as a strawweight.
“That cut, it drains you. I definitely think I’m gonna outcardio her, out-speed her and I definitely hit really hard for my size. I think that’s gonna be my key to beating her.”
If Hill does win, it would be quite the story after her release from the UFC in 2015. And in her mind, there would only be one thing to do next: call for a title shot against Jedrzejczyk.
“I definitely feel like Joanna is an easier fight than Andrade is,” Hill said. “For me.”