‘She’s lying to the fans’: Bellator star Avsaragova taunts Loureda, talks Jojua after weigh-in drama forces her to strip (VIDEO)
Popular Avsaragova's following has swelled to more than 247,000 on Instagram since she beat Tara Graff in spectacular fashion in April, needing just 29 seconds to knock her opponent out in their flyweight fight in Connecticut, where she is about to make her second appearance for the promotion.
Another American, debutant Gabriella Gulfin, stands ahead of Avsaragova, although the North Ossetia native struggled to make weight after a cut that she had accepted would be difficult, with a screen being held in front of her as she stripped to a towel in an awkward stand-off before eventually making the limit.
There were jokes that a male who was called upon to help two women hold the screen up may have enjoyed copping an eyeful along the way, with his sightline clearing the screen and looking towards photogenic Avsaragova, who was standing on the scales attempting to make weight.
"I know my man was trying to get a sneak peek," mocked one fan after watching the weigh-in footage, while another observed: "The man in the middle is having a great day at work."
A critic asked: "Why would they hold it like that for her? Old boy is getting a show. Put it behind the scale next time?"
Avsaragova, who had earlier pictured herself sitting in a sauna in an insulating suit, held her head in her hands at one point during the faintly farcical scenes, but the 22-year-old is clearly looking forward to returning to action.
"To be honest, I wasn't expecting the fight to be that quick, and that's probably why I let the emotions go afterwards," she said of her lightning evening against Graff.
"That was also my first knockout and I was really excited to get it over with. I always feel confident, cool, collected. It's all good for me.
"It was crazy how many people followed me. I really liked it because I felt the love. I'm going to keep working hard to pay the fans back.
It's Diana Avsaragova fight week 🥳 pic.twitter.com/lnfoSHRFjo— ꜱᴜʜᴀɪʟᴏʟ🇵🇸🇮🇪 (@LamebredFighter) July 15, 2021
Diana Avsaragova 😍— El DudeO'rino (@PeeEyeZeeZeeWhy) July 15, 2021
"I've got a lot more followers, a lot more support. Again, I'm focused on my fighting abilities. I like the support but, at the same time, it's not that important."
UFC star Liana Jojua is a vital ally to Avsaragova, although the Georgian will not be in her corner as usual this time.
"She wasn't able to get a visa on time and that's why she couldn't come," she explained. "I hope it's going to be the last time she's not in my corner.
"I'll try to be in her corner too, but I don't know how the schedule is going to work out."
Little is known about Gulfin, who Avsaragova admitted she has been able to find little footage of, warning only that "she can't bring anything that I'm not ready for."
Loureda, who has also beaten Graff but has lost to Hannah Guy since Avsaragova last fought, also holds few fears for her.
"I think she's lying to herself, she's lying to the fans," she said, responding to the suggestion from Loureda that she did not know Avsaragova's name.
"She obviously knows who I am. I'm probably in her head right now – that's why she's saying that. I'm not going to be choosing opponents. I'll fight anyone who's in front of me, including her.
"I see all my future opponents on the same level, and none of them are on my level. I don't want to call anyone out because I'm going to roll everyone over. Whoever is in front of me will be behind me."
Avsaragova is supremely certain of remaining unbeaten ahead of what could be something of a homecoming on October 23, when Bellator's first show in Russia will head to Moscow with a headline bout involving Fedor Emelianenko.
"I would like to fight on that card," she acknowledged. "The timeframe is perfect."Also on rt.com ‘They’ll match us together soon’: Bellator sensation Avsaragova talks chances of fan-friendly fight with ‘beautiful’ Loureda