Jessica Borga is a professional mixed martial arts fighter from Lakeland, Florida. She fights out of Champions MMA under the nickname ‘The Black Widow‘, most recently on the MMA’s biggest digital streaming platform the UFC Fight Pass. Borga scored a first-round knockout victory over her opponent, and that got the attention of UFC’s president Dana White.
In an interview with Money Talk Radio’s Marc Charles, Jessica Borga details meeting Dana White and how that leads to being presented with a contract offer she had to refuse. Borga was offered a contract to fight in UFC’s Flyweight division, which requires its fighters to cut their body weight down to 126lbs (125lbs if it’s a championship fight).
Borga’s experience cutting down to that weight limit in the early part of her career was enough for her and her fight contract manager Ross Kellin to refuse the offer from the biggest fight promotion in the world. Borga explains that it was a tough decision, but waiting for her opportunity to join the company in the Bantamweight (135lbs) division is what’s best for her career and more importantly her health.
Weight cutting has been a big problem in combat sports since the sport has developed weight divisions. Amateur wrestlers have always been known for having a culture of weight cutting in high school and college, and there have been unfortunate incidents of deaths in both wrestling and mixed martial arts directly related to dangerous weight cutting. Borga recognizes the dangers and her actions may save her from serious injury.
Just last November a teenage girl named Jessica Lindsay died at the age of 14 after collapsing during a weight cut for a Muay Thai kickboxing fight in Perth. She died tragically after tweeting that “weight cutting is sick”. Chinese flyweight ONE Championship MMA Fighter Yang Jian Bing passed away on December 11, 2015, due to cardiopulmonary failure following his weight cut for an event. His death involved dehydration and heat stroke.
Borga’s decision to stay the course and fight on the regional circuit until the right opportunity opens up is a display of resolve and self-control. The majority of hungry up and coming fighters would take the risk of the weight cut, and not risk waiting for another opportunity to join the UFC. Borga currently has a pro record of 2-2 and is negotiating a possible 4-fight contract with Titan FC, a regional promotion that airs their events live on the UFC’s digital platform, Fight Pass. Follow Jessica Borga on all social media platforms @BlackWidowBorga.
By Marc Charles for Money Talk Radio