Amanda Lemos wants Tatiana Suarez fight rebooked after UFC 298 bout with Mackenzie Dern

Amanda Lemos agreed to face Mackenzie Dern at UFC 298 after original foe Tatiana Suarez withdrew with a knee injury, and she still wants to take on Suarez after Saturday’s pay-per-view event in California.

Lemos lamented the fact that Suarez is once again dealing with knee injuries, something that has already forced the undefeated wrestler to stay out of action for many years of her prime. She hopes that the UFC decides to re-book the match for UFC 301, which is expected to take place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on May 4.

“[Suarez] suffers too many injuries, unfortunately,” Lemos told MMA Fighting’s Trocação Franca podcast. “I’ve had injuries too, and if I say I can’t fight, that’s because there isn’t even one-percent chance I can fight. She’s been dealing with that for many years, right? In fact, if it wasn’t for the injuries, she would have fought for the belt years ago. But we have to deal with that. That can happen to all of us.”

Lemos enters the octagon for the first time since coming up short in a title bout against Weili Zhang in August 2023, and guarantees she’s ready to take on Dern wherever they go. Dern is a multiple-time jiu-jitsu champion with four UFC submissions to her credit, while Lemos has secured five of her seven octagon victories by stoppage, tapping out Michelle Waterson-Gomez and Miranda Granger.

“I believe Mackenzie wants to take me to the ground and do her thing,” Lemos said. “That’s where she feels comfortable. She’s showing her evolution, she’s also evolving on the feet, and I think it’s going to be a great fight.”

“Mackenzie is a jiu-jitsu ace, but I’m feeling great in all aspects of the ground fight,” Lemos added. “I like to fight on my feet, obviously, but nothing stops me from grappling [with Dern] and catching her at some point. Anything can happen at any moment in MMA and surprise people. I respect and admire Mackenzie, and I’m happy to be fighting her.”

Lemos is confident that defeating Dern and Suarez back-to-back will earn her another shot at the UFC gold. Lemos knows anything can happen, but expects Zhang to still be sitting at the top of the strawweight division after her April 13 fight against Yan Xiaonan at UFC 300.

“I don’t have this obsession of fighting someone that has beaten me, to get back at them,” Lemos said. “I don’t have that. I lost, that’s it. I’ll fight whoever has the belt, regardless of who that is. The belt is my focus, and that’s it.”

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