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Gloria de Paula: First UFC loss was ‘terrible,’ but showed ‘many’ holes to fix ahead of UFC Vegas 33

Gloria de Paula looks for her first UFC victory when she meets Cheyanne Buys in Las Vegas.
Zuffa LLC

Gloria de Paula returns a different fighter for her second octagon appearance at UFC Vegas 33 this Saturday night in Las Vegas.

“Glorinha” joined the company after winning a decision over Pauline Macias at Dana White’s Contender Series in November 2020, but was no match for Jinh Yu Frey’s wrestling and top control in her first UFC bout this past March, losing a decision at UFC APEX.

Back to the drawing board after being “exposed” in a way, the Chute Boxe fighter focused on her defensive grappling and wrestling to be able to use her striking against Cheyanne Buys.

“I focused more on [fixing] my holes,” de Paula said in an interview with MMA Fighting. “That fight… Losing was terrible, of course, but it taught me a lot. It showed many little details I needed to fix in my game to make sure it doesn’t happen again. I focused a lot on my grappling and the type of game she did.

“I also focused on being more present during the fight, working on my mental to be there the whole time, be aware the entire time, and choose my attacks better.”

Frey was 0-2 in the UFC going into their bout at UFC Vegas 21, and de Paula understands her decision to “play safe” for 15 minutes.

“I expected that a little bit, but I thought she would also try to let things go a bit more,” de Paula said. “At first, I thought she would do that and decide to grapple if she wasn’t going well, but she went that path since the beginning.

“That’s a possibility [Buys] has in this fight as well, but I don’t see her doing that based on her previous fights. She likes to trade the whole time. In fact, she also faced this similar game in her [UFC] debut. She wanted to fight but [Montserrat Ruiz] only took her down and stalled.”

“Glorinha” knows it’s MMA and Buys might take a safer route to guarantee a much-needed victory in the UFC, but envisions a different scenario at UFC Vegas 33.

“My style is to go for the knockout the entire time,” de Paula said. “But she’s very tough, so I believe I’m going to win by points.”