Danielle Kelly reveals plans to move into MMA by next year

Published by
Peter Kavinsky

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BJJ star Danielle Kelly’s inevitable transition to MMA is one step closer to reality as she seeks to make the switch by 2023.

Kelly was in attendance at one of grappling’s biggest events of the year, the 2022 ADCC World Championships, but as a spectator rather than a competitor this time around.

The event, which counts ONE Championship among its main sponsors, brought together some of the biggest names in the sport, whether in the crowd or on the mats. Like Kelly, former ONE world bantamweight champion Bibiano Fernandes was also in attendance, while 19-year-old Kade Ruotolo was crowned the youngest ADCC world champion at the weekend-long event.

mma journalist The Schmo caught up with Danielle Kelly and asked her a few questions about her career and future plans. Asked about her time in MMA, the American grappler said:

“I hope soon I will have one or two more jiu-jitsu matches and then maybe I will focus on my first MMA fight next year. I just want to compete in jiu-jitsu first , then next year I want to move into MMA.

Coming off of an impressive ONE Championship debut in a submission wrestling match against MMA veteran Mei Yamaguchi, Kelly has fans excited to see what she does next, regardless of sport.

Watch Kelly’s interview with The Schmo below:


What could be the next step for Danielle Kelly?

Kelly specifically said she’s considering one or two more jiu-jitsu matches before switching to MMA, which means she’s not preparing for an MMA fight in her next outing.

One of the options for Silver Fox’s rep could be a former rival, Jessa Khan, who signed with ONE Championship but has yet to make her promotional debut. Khan picked up a decision win over Kelly in February last year, and it’s only a matter of time before their paths cross again.

There’s also the option to lock the horns with ONE Women’s World Atomic Weight Champion, Angela Lee. Danielle Kelly sparked a bit of a back-and-forth online with Lee after she said she was focusing on “legitimate grapplers,” which angered the atomweight MMA queen. The Singaporean American proved to be one of the best MMA grapplers in the world today, with eight of her nine finishes by submission. A submission grappling match between the pair is sure to prove that at least one of them is right.

ONE Championship’s dynamic roster is always on the lookout for the best talent in the world, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see another big name match Danielle Kelly on its next outing.


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Peter Kavinsky

Peter Kavinsky is the Executive Editor at cablefreetv.org

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