Grappling Phenom Danielle Kelly Eyes Inevitable Move to MMA – “I Just Need to Get My Feet a Little Wet”

Published 04/19/2022, 7:00 AM EDT

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Danielle Kelly impressed ONE Championship founder & CEO with her aggressive and relentless grappling performance at ONE X. Thus, the 26-year-old grappling prodigy received an extra $50K for her performance from Chatri Sityodtong. However, the Brazilian Jiujitsu black belt aspires to do more than just grappling under ONE banner.

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In an exclusive interview with Essentially Sports’ Arunaditya Aima, Kelly talked about training at the Evolve MMA, besides The Silver Fox BJJ, and her future MMA debut.

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“So, I train here [at The Silver Fox BJJ], and eventually when I’m in Singapore, I’ll be training with Evolve. Especially when I’m getting ready for my first MMA fight. I train with a lot of talented girl fighters… I have been working on my striking and MMA.”

Kelly presented she has been mixing MMA in her training for the past three years. Thus, she believes, “When the time comes, I’ll be prepared.”

However, she doesn’t want to rush the move. “I want to make sure that I understand fully about the game because it’s MMA. You can’t just pull guard; You’ll get punched in the face,” said Kelly.

Yet, the 26-year-old is confident that she and her team would prepare a game plan to counter the striking. Still, she gave one change she is yet to make.

“Getting used to getting punched in the face, like I just got started to get used to that… I am really excited for when that point comes,” Kelly said about the inevitable MMA debut.

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Danielle Kelly believes her MMA debut is coming soon

After an impressive debut performance at ONE X, the Jiujitsu sensation talked about the time frame for the MMA transition.

Kelly suggested she doesn’t have a set timeline for the big move. However, she understands what she wants for the occasion.

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“I would want all my coaches to be with me because it would be my first MMA fight. So, the main ones that are with me, I would love them to be there.”

The American also offered that her time at the Evolve MMA gym would be a big factor in her transition to MMA, as there she would’ve more bodies to work with. Thus, she feels confident because of her hard-working teammates that push her.

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“I just need to get my feet a little wet before I make that decision, but yeah, I feel it’s coming soon.”

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What do you think of Danielle Kelly’s comments? Share your thought in the comments section.

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Written by:

Deepak Kumar

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Deepak Kumar is a UFC author at EssentiallySports. His love for MMA comes from the chaos and violence the fight game brings to the table. A BJJ aspirant, Deepak began following the sport as a casual fan when Ronda Rousey was finishing her opponents in seconds.
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Edited by:

Arman Khan

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