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Can Mackenzie Dern Take Advantage Of UFC Spotlight?

Mackenzie Dern is one of the biggest names in women's MMA, but can she handle the spotlight of UFC main event?

Mackenzie Dern entered the UFC with a glowing resume and name.

Since making her Octagon debut, she has only continued to shine.

Dern will headline this Saturday’s UFC Fight Night event live on ESPN+ against Marina Rodriguez. The women’s strawweight contest takes place from the UFC Apex in Las Vegas.

The 28-year-old Dern has won four consecutive fights, welcomed a daughter and now gets to main event. 

Can she take advantage of the spotlight? We will see.

Since a 2019 decision loss to Amanda Ribas, Dern has reeled off three submission wins and a decision victory. She stopped Nina Nunes this past April, earning a “Performance of the Night” bonus with her first round armbar win.

Dern also downed Virna Jandiroba with submissions in the first round over both Randa Markos and Hannah Cifers. All in all, she is 11-1 with seven submission wins to her credit.

She currently owns the most submission wins in the UFC’s female strawweight division with four and is tied with the most submissions at four. Dern has also claimed three “Performance of the Night” bonuses.

In Rodriguez, Dern will be taking on a veteran with a strong record of 14-1-2. She topped Michelle Waterson in her flyweight debut and finished Ribas earlier this year. 

The only person to defeat Rodriguez was Carla Esparza, and that came via split decision. She has two draws with Cynthia Calvillo and Markos on her resume. 

Other planned bouts include Randy Brown meeting Jared Gooden, Tim Elliott taking on Matheus Nicolau, Sabina Mazo going up against Mariya Agapova and Phil Hawes battling Deron Winn.

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