The stage is set for UFC flyweight Maycee Barber. On Saturday night she will be headlining the prelims for UFC 246, and with Conor McGregor in the main event, there will be plenty of eyes on the card. While many people would have butterflies in their stomach, Barber remained calm, cool and collective during UFC 246 media day.
“Ben Askren just told me the other day that pressure is a privilege,” said Barber. “If I got crosshairs on my back then bring it on.”
Barber, 21, is one of the hottest young prospects in the sport. This weekend she’ll share the octagon with Roxanne Modafferi, an MMA veteran who started fighting in 2003 when Barber was only five years old.
“People say that she has all this experience, but I’ve been training since I’m three,” said Barber. “I’ve been in the gym for hours and hours and while someone may have years of experience, how many days and hours of training went into those years? From the time I started training when I was three, until the time I started fighting at 15, I was putting in six or seven hours of training a day.”
Barber, whose nickname is “The Future,” has a perfect 8-0 record with seven career finishes. She plans on adding another win and finish to her record this weekend.
“All I know is the quick finish so I’ve never imagined a fight going the distance. Just because they give us 15 or 25 minutes doesn’t mean that we need to take that long.”
There’s a possibility that Barber will earn a title shot with a win, but she’s not rushing to get there. Barber’s goal is to become the youngest champion in UFC history and she still has some time to do so. In the meantime she’s focused on getting better and of course talking trash on Paige VanZant.
“I don’t make friends with people I want to beat up. I’m not like Paige VanZant. Paige doesn’t like me, but the fact that she doesn’t want to fight me because she doesn’t like me, I think is stupid.”
The prelims for UFC 246 will be live on ESPN with Maycee Barber and Roxanne Modafferi headlining. The main card featuring McGregor and Donald Cerrone as the main will follow the prelims live on pay per view.