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Bareknuckle fighting is only for the ‘toughest of the tough’ — like Paige VanZant

Welcome to the Salty Spittoon. How tough are ya’?

Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) strawweight Instagram star, Paige VanZant, is expected to make her Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship (BKFC) debut during Super Bowl Weekend in Tampa, Florida, after signing with the gloveless promotion last summer.

The end result will be irrefutable proof that “12 Gauge” is the “toughest of the tough,” something VanZant didn’t get enough credit for while competing in mixed martial arts (MMA) over the last eight years, six of which took place inside the Octagon.

“I feel like looking at my fight career, I have an equal amount of submission finishes, knockouts, and like a decision,” VanZant told SiriusXM. “So for me, it was more about when you look at my whole fight career, the one thing that stands out above anything is how tough I am and I carried that through every single fight and I think the people who really make it in bareknuckle boxing are the people who are tough. It’s a sport for only the toughest of the tough. And that’s where I want to show my worth and my value. At the same time, I get to really utilize and sharpen what I feel is one of my best weapons and that’s my striking.”

BKFC is no stranger to former UFC strawweights, putting pen to paper for Bec Rawlings back in early 2018. That was roughly two years after “Rowdy” got starched by VanZant at UFC on FOX 21 in Vancouver and a bareknuckle rematch seems inevitable.

“I’m sure we could probably try to work something out with Bellator and Bare Knuckle, doing a cross promotion thing,” Rawlings told MMA Fighting. “She hasn’t been the greatest with not taking damage. She’s known for being tough and that’s cause she takes a beating. I just don’t think she’s thought it through. I think after her first fight, whoever that is, I think she’ll probably realize that bare-knuckle boxing isn’t the sport for her.”

We’ll find out in less than two months.