Valerie Loureda delivered the perfect response to her critics with a stunning KO victory over Tara Graff at Bellator 243 on Saturday.
Fighting for the first time since she was slammed by a UFC star for “sexualising” the sport with her social media activity, Loureda KO’d Graff with a huge right hand with seconds remaining in the second round of their bout.
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In what seemed to be a direct message to her critics, the 22-year-old then broke out a rather raunchy victory dance to celebrate.
“3-0! Wear your heels, put on your lashes, spar hard in the morning, make your tik toks, and don’t let ANYONE tell you what you can or cant be,” Loureda wrote on Instagram alongside a video of her victory dance.
Earlier this year, the UFC’s Macy Chiasson called out Loureda after she posted a workout video in the gym that Chiasson described as a “strip-tease.”
Chiasson claimed Loureda was “selling sex” to get male followers and setting a bad example for young girls.
However Loureda fired back with a powerful response before Bellator 243.
“I don’t do anything for social media,” she told reporters.
“I do things for myself. For example, I am an extreme girly-girl outside of the cage. So the way that I market myself, it’s not for social media and it’s not for men.
“This is the way that I look. I’ve worked my whole life to have this body, to have this figure — I was a ballerina, I’ve been a martial artist.
“I think that’s where people mistake. It’s not for social media. I am the way that I look like, but I’m also a fighter.
“What does one thing have to do with the other?
“Just because I look different than other martial artists doesn’t make me any different. It’s my identity, this is why Valerie Loureda is different.”
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Loureda even dropped a prophetic line that her social media activity usually leads to her opponents underestimating her in the cage.
“I have different passions outside of the cage and that’s okay,” she added.
“The way I am doesn’t mean I market myself like that. It means I’m a normal girl who has an education outside of the cage and that should be recognised.
“It’s just jealousy and they’re not educated in that aspect. They’ve never seen it before and they can’t handle it. But they will when they see me fight in the cage.
“She sees me on Instagram and she thinks I only post pictures, but she doesn’t know I train twice, three times a day, and like an animal.
“That’s my secret weapon. She thinks I’m weak – I’m just an Instagram model. But when I step in the cage, I transform.”