Bellator MMA shut down its women's division at the end summer 2013, and Jessica Aquilar -- the No.1-ranked Strawweight in the world -- was left without a promotion for which to fight.
"After Bellator released me, I really didn't know what was going to happen," Aguilar recently told MMAmania.com. "I always stayed positive. I know how this career goes and I've been through some difficult times. I knew that there was something out there. I was ranked No. 1 in the world and I knew that there was Invicta out there and Ultimate Fighitng Championship (UFC) was growing. I didn't know a lot about World Series of Fighting (WSOF) because they didn't have a women's division."
Meantime, Aguilar took a fight against Megumi Fuji at Vale Tudo: "Japan 3" overseas on Oct. 5, 2013, winning via majority technical decision. After that fight, she attended WSOF 6, which led to her finding her new mixed martial arts (MMA) home.
"The last WSOF fight, I went to the fights and I met them. I spoke to them briefly and I got a call saying, 'we want you on the team, what do we have to do?' and they made it happen. Here I am today. I'm honored and I am grateful to be part of the WSOF family. Any emotion that makes you happy, I am."
Bellator's main reason for giving up on its women's division was that they couldn't provide enough fights for the all the fighters. One could assume that this could potentially become an issue for WSOF since the upstart promotion has yet to establish a full roster of women.
"No that doesn't concern me," Aguilar said when asked about that very possibility. "It's in my contract. I'm protected in that way and I believe in them, so I'm okay. I'm not worried about that."
The majority of the top 115-pound fighters in the world are currently under the Invicta FC banner, including division champion Carla Esparza, who Aguilar defeated while with Bellator. What women fighters will be rounding out the WSOF strawweight division, and what opponent, will the American Top Team-trained fighter face first?
"We haven't discussed any of that right now, but I trust in them that they will bring me good competition," Aguilar said. "They are going for the best. They signed me, so I'm sure they will find some good competition for me.
"I'm going to be fighting early 2014. I know that. I just don't know any details yet. I'll be ready for when I get the call and I'll fight anyone."
*Note: This interview was conducted prior to news breaking on the UFC's plans to add a 115-pound division. Aguilar was unavailable for comment on that story.