Nina Ansaroff Discusses Her Relationship With Amanda Nunes

Nina Ansaroff Discusses Her Relationship With Amanda Nunes
Photo: © Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Nina Ansaroff may have been the woman in the shadows for much of the UFC 207 Amanda Nunes versus Ronda Rousey, but this week it's her turn to be center of attention as we head into UFC Fight Night Phoenix this Sunday.

Being so close to watching all the drama play out at UFC 207 gave Ansaroff of a unique experience of fight week. She revealed earlier this week that her and her partner Amanda Nunes were as much in the dark as everyone else when it came to the champion's media obligation, but that it wasn't such a bad thing having the times to themselves.

"The only really reason it might've become a little frustrating is because we weren't really told about anything," Ansaroff told UFC Unfiltered. "We found out about everything the same way the media found out. It was kinda like "Hey what's up? You aren't going to do s*it this week" or "Hey Amanda I read up on internet are you not doing anything this week?

"We just ended up going shopping and that. It wasn't such a bad thing."

Asked about what it was like to be in a relationship with someone she also trains and spars with, Ansaroff insisted that it was all very much normal for them and that it wasn't all that much of a big deal.

"We just take everything out in our sparring rounds to be honest," Ansaroff joked. "We enjoy being around each other and we are also best friends. We go fishing together and we go training together and sometimes we go a little heavier in the sparring session and then we just smile after.



"It's not that bad. It really does help [sparring]. The best thing about it is, is that it's not something that's ever really talked about. It's kinda like you know what's up, I know what's up. We get it out in our training and then it's never left the cage and it's never left the gym. That's it. It's amazing."

Ansaroff faces Jocelyn Jones-Lybarger in the featured bout on the UFC Fight Pass portion of this Sunday's fight card. Ansaroff is currently riding a losing streak of two with her last loss to Justine Kish all the way back in January of last year. Despite losing the fight, Ansaroff says she took a lot from the loss and believes she has now put everything together during her year off.

"In my first fight in the UFC I literally slipped and she got on top--that factor ended that fight," Ansaroff said. "I was probably on my way to a close decision, but then because of that slip I lost top control and ended up getting finished. In my last fight it was also very close and could've gone either way and I felt like I had it, but unfortunately the judges didn't think the same.

"If you look at my record just on paper it looks horrible, but people that know me and people that train with me at American Top Team who are former champions believe in me and encourage me. I know I have it in me. I don't gas and I stay consistent.

"The 115 pounds was a bit of a challenge because I'm normally a 125 pounder, but I've taken the year off and had knee surgery and I feel it was blessing in disguise being able to take that year off, watch Amanda have her most dominate year and be there for her."



While some would thing knee surgery was a major thing to go through, Ansaroff revealed that during her younger life she was part of a horrific motorcycle accident.

"A car ran a stop sign and I fractured my lower back, compounded fractured my wrists, I broke my ankle--it was a really bad accident," Ansaroff revealed. "I was in ICU for three weeks and after that I got on a motorcycle again just to get rid of the fear you know. Every time a car would pass close I would brace myself you know, I just wanted to get over that. I've had a lot of friend die on them and I'll never got on one again."

After making a full recovery, it was her desire to get her fitness back that led her to the American Top Team gym where she found her love for MMA.

"I started kickboxing as I child and I knew it kept me in shape," Ansaroff said. "After the motorcycle accident, it caused me to gain weight, be totally out of shape and lazy because I thought I wouldn't be able to do much anymore because of all the injuries.

"So I googled like kickboxing and [American] Top Team came up. I didn't know what a great gym it was, it was just close to me because I was born and raised in South Florida. I went in there in, took a amateur kickboxing class and Ricardo Liborio approached me and we just went from there."
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