Valerie Loureda Made the Perfect Debut… The Blue Chip Prospect Kicked Off Her MMA Career With a Vicious First Round Victory in Connecticut… Watch the Finish Below…
You know what? Bellator might have unearthed itself a true gem here. Valerie Loureda is a 4th black belt in WTF Taekwondo (the Olympic style of the Korean martial art). She’s just 20 years old, but has represented the United States in world championships, and has now made her professional MMA debut.
Loureda fought Colby Fletcher at Bellator 216, in Uncasville, Connecticut, in what was easily the fight of the night in the Mohegan Sun Arena. That’s not saying much, because there were some truly dreadful contests on the night, but it’s fair to say Loureda stole the show.
Coming into this one with an immaculate record of 0 wins and 0 losses, fans were curious to see how the athlete – who also works as a model – would be able to translate her Taekwondo background into MMA. They were not left disappointed. Check out the finish below.
— BellatorMMA (@BellatorMMA) February 17, 2019
Loureda dominated this fight. Although she was clipped a couple of times early by Fletcher, she wasn’t fazed and was able to establish control of the octagon, putting together combinations of kicks and punches. She fought in a very mature fashion, using her hands to set up her kicks, without overcommitting and leaving herself open.
When she finally connected with a sublime combination, she dropped the hapless Fletcher to the floor and followed up with some very powerful hammer-fists. She continued to blast away at her opponent’s head until referee Kevin MacDonald finally decided to intervene and put and end to the fight. It was a great finish and a fantastic debut for the rising star.
— DAZN Boxing (@DAZNBoxing) February 17, 2019
If you don’t believe that this meant the world to Loureda, then check out the clip below. In her interview, she poured out her heart. She told ‘Big’ John McCarthy:
“This is the moment I’ve been dreaming of since I was a little girl. All my whole life, I’ve just dreamed of the moment I would earn my way to a platform that would allow me to share my martial arts black belt and influence the world. I want to thank you to Scott Coker for being such an ambassador for Taekwondo and impacting the lives of martial artists.
Thank you to American Top Team for letting me train with the best of the best. And thank you to my martial art Taekwondo for making me the well-rounded fighter and woman I am today. Thank you Connecticut. You will always hold a special place in my heart.”
— Valerie Loureda (@valerielouredaa) February 14, 2019
It will be fascinating to see her journey in MMA. As we saw she did take some elbows early on, so against more experienced opponents she could be exposed – especially on the ground. However, you can bet Bellator is going to manage her very carefully. She’s got star power and they know it. Let’s leave the last words to Loureda:
“Everyday I go into training. It’s a mental battle with myself because I am very competitive. And I want to be at a competitive level with all of these fighters because I want to be the best in MMA as well.”