Valerie Loureda is a Taekwondo Blackbelt Who Has a Lot of People Talking… She’s Been Signed By Bellator and Looks Set to be One of the Big Breakout Stars of 2019…
If you don’t know who Valerie Loureda is, you will soon. She’s been signed by Bellator and will compete at Bellator 215, set to take place in March. Loureda is a 4th-degree black belt in the Korean martial art and a former member of the US Olympic team.
She has a very strong social media presence – because let’s face it, she’s both badass and gorgeous, and she knows it. This is a great combination if you want to kick off a career in MMA because she’s already got a following. But Loureda is by no means just a pretty face. She’s been fighting since she was 14.
Loureda has been named as a fighter to watch in 2019. She’s fought four times on the amateur scene, annihilating her opponents in the process. With the right handling and careful management of the early stages of her career, Bellator could have their hands on another very special young fighter.
The 20-year-old has a lot of competitive experience, something that most fighters her age will not have. She’s been operating at the highest amateur level in Taekwondo and is capable of astonishing kicks. Loureda explained to MMAjunkie where she gets her martial arts pedigree from. She said:
“My mom was pregnant with me during her black belt test. I guess you could say I was kicking from before I was even born. It’s in my blood. I haven’t gone a day in my life without throwing a punch or a kick. It’s who I am.”
“Taekwondo was evolving a lot. It was becoming a lot of point sparring, so it was kind of going away from my style. I fought in the world championship and then I fought in a President’s Cup, and honestly, I kicked a girl and I broke her rib, and I wanted to mount her, even though I’d never done MMA before. That’s when I realized, ‘Wait, Valerie – something else is calling me. Something bigger.’”
As you can see from the footage above, you really don’t want to stand with her. It’s going to be very interesting to see what happens when she gets taken down. However, Loureda is talking a good game and is based at one of the best camps on the planet in American Top Team, so you’d expect that they’ve worked hard on her wrestling and BJJ. She said:
“I feel like I’m a true martial artist, and MMA has allowed me to portray to the world the honor, discipline and tradition that comes with being a black belt, and Bellator has given me the opportunity to influence the lives of thousands of people, especially women who are looking and are struggling to pursue their passion, so I’m really excited to just get in that cage, confront whoever they put in front of me, and with respect, win that challenge and continue going up and developing.
“I really want to leave my legacy on this world as being the best female martial artist who has ever stepped on this planet.”
With Paul Daley fighting Michael ‘Venom’ Page in the main event, this will be a very interesting card for Bellator. The US promotion is set for a massive expansion in 2019. It’s already doing its best to further its reach into Europe, signing up many Irish and UK based fighters.
MMA is going to get to a stage where there are recognizable stars across all of the promotions. This can only be a healthy thing for the sport as an entity.