Recently becoming the first Mexican born NWA women’s champion, Thunder Rosa has wrestled around the world. On top of that, she transitioned to MMA last year in Combate Americas.
We talked to Rosa about her wrestling and MMA training.
Recently becoming the first Mexican born NWA women’s champion, Thunder Rosa has wrestled around the world. On top of that, she transitioned to MMA last year in Combate Americas.
We talked to Rosa about her wrestling and MMA training.
(Photo courtesy – IMMAF)
With all the news this past weekend, one item may have been incidentally flew under the radar, but will be important for the future of the women’s divisions.
The International MMA Federation has formed a Women’s Committee, which held its first meeting on International Women’s Day. The committee of four women will help facilitate and oversee projects to expand women and girls in the sport internationally in the coming years not only in the amateur, but pro ranks as well.
The IMMAF itself has been a catalyst for the expansion of the women’s divisions internationally over the years, with stars like Minna Grusander and Sunna Davidsdottir making their way into the professional end of the sport.
We talked to the committee’s chair, Hayzia Bellem, about the goals of the committee and the steps they are taking moving forward. Continue reading Hayzia Bellem Talks About IMMAF Women’s Committee’s Goals and Activism
The hottest strawweight prospect on the InvictaFC roster has finally made it to the UFC.
Undefeated Alexa Grasso (8-0) will fight in her home country of Mexico as she faces Heather Clark (7-5) at UFC Fight Night Mexico City November 5th. The match was reported by several news outlets Thursday, with her teammate Irene Aldana confirming the match on twitter.
Grasso is coming off a win over Jodie Esquibel at Invicta FC 18 this past month. With the win, Grass earned a title shot against champion Angela Hill, but has foregone it to get called up by the UFC.
Clark is coming off a loss to Karolina Kowalkiewicz after back to back wins on her official record.
The match will air on Fox Sports 1.
As I explained in my open letter, I am looking to change Wombat Sports to what it was initially meant to be. I can’t do this on my own, and that;s where you come in.
We are looking for contributors to help with writing articles and covering certain combat sports. You would also get to interview talented athletes in those sports.
The main contributors we are looking for is in women’s boxing, Muay Thai, freestyle wrestling, and BJJ. (We already have some people interested in covering the WMMA portion of the site). The cool things is I have the tools to gain news and info for these sports, just not the time to write it up. You can “learn on the job” if you aren’t an expert on these topics; but being curious is the key thing.
You can learn more about what I am expecting and what benefits come with being a part of Wombat Sports here.
Member websites will be giving the away the awards via written stories and podcasts.
The members include:
The awards will wrap up with Pro WMMA Now giving away the “Fighter of the Year” award on Monday January 19.
We will update the list (and links to acceptance interviews) as each website awards the recipients.
Here are the winners:
Fighter of the Year
Winners of the divisional awards will be eligible
Featherweight of the Year
Bantamweight of the Year
Flyweight of the Year
Strawweight of the Year
Atomweight of the Year
Fan Favorite Fighter
Fight of the Year
Knockout of the Year
Submission of the Year
Newcomer of the Year
Amateur of the Year
Promotion of the Year
Sponsor of the Year
Headline of the Year
As it turns out, it was busier than ever with multiple promotions introducing women’s divisions and throwing their hat into the cage. Demand saw a lot of fresh new faces in the pro ranks, and more matches than ever before.
We compiled stats from multiple sources throughout the year and were able to get a nearly accurate accounting of the year that was 2014.
563 – The number of fights this year. This was a 24% increase from last year (415 in 2013). With Invicta doing more cards in 2015 and the UFC gaining a strawweight division, we expect a huge increase next year.
253 – Pro debuters this year, 72 more than last year. With the newly found demand and opportunity pressing for more pro debuts this past year, we actually suspect this number to go down due to the drain of amateur talent.
211 – Number of first round finishes. It more than doubles second round finishes. There was four finishes in championship rounds this year, two in both the 4th and 5th rounds.
211 – Number of fights that went the distance. 78% of that total were unanimous decisions. We saw 4 majority decisions and a record 6 draws.
202 – How many fights were in the U.S. a 22% increase from last year. It topped the list of countries who had female fights. Brazil (152) came in second and Japan (35) third. Brazil increased its total by 44%.
184 – Total submissions this year. It was the most popular way to win a fight edging TKOs by 34. More than half (109) happened in round 1. There was 4th and 5th round subs this year, which are rare.
165 – Fights at flyweight this most of any division. It edged out strawweight by 14 fights but with the 115ers busy with TUF 20, expect them to rebound. Bantamweight (120) came in third with atomweight (50) and featherweight (40) taking forth and fifth. For those interested, eight fights took place at the newly forming lightweight division.
150 – TKOs this year. This is a 32% increase from last year’s total. The first round remains the most popular round to get a TKO with 73% of them happening then.
83 – Armbars – the most popular submission. This increased by 75% from last year. Rear naked chokes came in second with 69. There was two bulldog choke submissions this year.
41 – Number of countries that had female fights this year. Although the actual number went up to 9, six countries didn’t have pro female fights this year but had them in 2013 – Scotland, Spain, India, Paraguay, Croatia, and Belgium. Several newcomers to the list are Moldova, Romania, and Thailand. If you include amateur fights, the number jumps to 47.
32 – Pro female fights in California, the most by a US state, smashing 2013’s mark of 9. It also nearly doubles the 2nd place finisher, Texas (18). In third was Nevada with 16 with all those fights happening in Las Vegas.
31 – Female fights in the UFC, the most by any organization. The UFC more than doubles their 2013 total (13). It only beat DEEP by one fight. Even though they came late to the party this year, Invicta managed to take the third spot with 27. With a new strawweight division in the UFC, it will be a horse race between them and Invicta in 2015.
15 – Recorded knockouts this year. Although several we didn’t consider “pure KOs”, this was less than last year’s total of 22.
6 – “Official” tournaments happened this year. Two XFC tournaments will crown season champions next year. There were 3 one night tournaments; two for MMA Super Heroes and the other was for Princesses of Pain. (TUF 20 was considered an exhibition tournament and only the finals were on the official records.)
6 – New world champions crowned this year. Two champions lost defending their title (DEEP-JEWELS 116 champion Emi Tomimastu and InvictaFC atomweight champion Michelle Waterson). Three won newly created titles – Carla Esparza (UFC strawweight); Pannie Kianzad (Cage Warriors bantamweight), and Takayo Hashi (Jewels 135 title).
1 – Heck of a historic year. UFC adds a new division, Invicta rises again, and Brazil grows its WMMA scene.
We look forward to continued growth in 2015.
In action Friday morning, Suvi Salmimies and Isabelle Pare fight to a draw at Cage 28 in Finland.
In the second quarterfinal of TUF 20, Jessica Penne defeated Aisling Daly by decision after a third extension round. You can read MMA Rising’s report in the fight here.
Next Wednesday, the finally two quarterfinal matches as Carla Esparza faces Tecia Torres in a match a year in the making, and Rose Namjunas takes on Joanne Calderwood.
Irene Alana has an unknown illness and is out of InvictaFC 10 next weekend against Marion Reneau. A replacement has yet to be named.
Tournament winner Renata Baldan looks to recover from her first loss as she takes on unbeaten Luciana Treze in a strawweight contest, and Karina Santana de Oliveira looks to gain her second win as a pro against flyweight prospect Mariana Leonardo.
Australia’s XFC (not to be confused with XFC International) will start its flyweight tournament February 28, 2015 in Brisbane.
The opening round features Terissa Wall (1-0) taking on Kate Da Silva (7-2) and Jaz Walker (1-0 ammy) battling Hera Tamati (0-1).
We wish a speedy recovery to InvictaFC vet Jasminka Cive as she is battle a staph infection.
Still some heavy rumors that InvictaFC 11 will be in Denver.
Princesses of Pain is back as they are set for their all female MMA card this weekend in New Zealand.
In the main event, champion Kate da Silva will start her drop in weight classes, taking on Rhiannon Thompson in a 132 pound catchweight bout.
In the co-main event, Tairi Ford and Gaela Nixon duke it out in a flyweight contest.
All fighters made weight.
In other matches on the card:
Amateur standout Roma Pawelek will make her long awaited pro debut as she takes on the undefeated Ashleigh Heustis at Beatdown in Newtown, ND.
Also on the card, InvictaFC vet Kathina Catron battles Rachael Smith.
In other pro bouts:
In amateur action:
Pound for pound queen Cecilia Braekhus will defend her four titles this weekend in Frederiksberg, Denmark.
The 26-0 WBA/WBO/WBC/IBF World welterweight champion will take on #1 contender Jennifer Retzke.
Retzke (15-1-1) has only lost once in the past 4 years. She is the current IBO welterweight champion, but will not be defending her title.
Both Brækhus (64.6 kg) and Retzke (66 kg) made weight.
Also on the card, Klara Svensson will defend her interim WBC World light welterweight title against Lucia Morelli.
In Guanajuato, Mexico, Jessica Gonzalez will defend her interim WBC World female bantamweight title for a second time against Magali Rodriguez.
Gonbzalez (5-1) won the title last year, and is coming off a split draw to Estrella Valverde this past August. Rodriguez (14-5-1) is coming off a TKO win over Marisela Landa in August and is looking for her first win.
In other boxing bouts:
In action Thursday:
In pro MMA:
In amateur MMA action at Gladiator Fighting Association in Topeka, KS:
Holly Holm is out of her match with Raquel Pennington at UFC 181 next month.
Holm has suffered a neck injury and will be taking it “day by day” to see if it will heal on its own. No word if Pennington will get another opponent.
Also in the injury front, UFC Strawwweight Tina Lähdemäki has to undergo shoulder surgery and will be out for 9 months.
After losing to Randa Markos, Tecia Torres advanced to the quarterfinals of “The Ultimate Fighter 20” tournament by defeating Bec Rawlings by unanimous decision. Torres will face former InvictaFC champion Carla Esparza in the next round.
The episode itself drew 578,000 live viewers – one of the best ratings of the season. Wednesday’s broadcast saw the most drama and cattiness of the episodes thus far.
Next week, Randa Markos and Felice Herrig square off in the quarterfinals.
The Princesses of Pain female fighting promotion will return to action November 29 will a docket of exciting fights.
The main event will feature Kate da Silva defend her 60 kg title against Dawn Chalmers.
In other pro bouts:
More matches to be announced soon.
A pair of bouts have been announced for OneFC December 5 in Manilla, Philippines.
Ana Jualton looks for her second win of her MMA career as she takes on Egypt’s Walaa Abas, while local favorite Jujeath Nagaowa will battle Tharoth Sam of Cambodia.
Two new fighters have signed to Invicta.
Texas’s Tessa Simpson signed this past week. The 3-1 atomweight returned to action last year with a win over Paulina Granados.
German strawweight Daniela Kortmann signed Thursday to the promotion, The first from Germany yo be signed, she went 3-1 as an amateur and won her pro debut in 2012.
World Series of Fighting President Ray Sefo told us during the WSOF conference call Thursday to expect more expansion of the women’s division in 2015. Sefo stated “timing” had a lot to do with not doing it this year. (We can only assume he meant TUF 20.)
He also is looking to develop a bantamweight division.
However, XFC is not too pleased with Kalindra Faria signing to the promotion.
XFC has filed a lawsuit against WSOF in the US over the Brazilian strawweight. Faria had signed an exclusive contract with the XFC before signing to WSOF. Faria will face WSOF champion Jessica Aguilar Saturday. More on that below.
A new trailer for “Boxing Chicks” is up. The story of former boxing trainer turned coach Terri Moss and her fight team will be released in December. You can see the trailer here.
Zoila Fruasto helped aspiring fighter Jennifer Penfield live out her dream, if just for an afternoon.
Penfield spared with the former Bellator champion in a Ford commercial. You can watch it here.
In the podcast Sunday we will talk to Rachael Smith about her upcoming fight with Kathina Catron and looking for her first pro win.
Come December 22, Ashlee Evans-Smith will be able to “seek other opportunities” as her “6 month inactive clause” in her WSOF contract will kick in.
Despite her ACL and meniscus tear, Heather Clark is insisting she will still fight on the TUF 20 finale.
Jessica Eye (10-2; 1NC) and Leslie Smith (7-5-1) look to make their way up the 135 division rankings as they will be the featured bout on the UFC prelims on Fox Sports 1 Saturday. Both tipped the scales at 134.
Eye is coming off a loss to Alexis Davis, while Smith is coming off a win over Jessamyn Duke. Both seem acclimated to the higher altitude and look to entertain the fans in Mexico.
The #1 ranked Jessica Aguilar will defend her WSOF title for the second time against the #8 ranked Kalindra Faria in Tampa, FL Saturday, which will air on NBC Sports Net. Both Aguilar (115) and Faria (114.8) came in on weight.
Aguilar has won 9 straight including her title win over Alida Gray and her title defense over Emi Fujino. With The Ultimate Fighter 20 almost ready to crown a champion, Aguilar need a solid win the stay at the top.
Faria is riding an 11 fight win streak and is looking to make an instant impact at 115. She has finished in 5 of her last 11 wins and is ranked in both the flyweight and strawweight divisions.
Cage Warriors will crown its first women’s bantamweight champion in London, England Saturday, in a fight that will stream on MMAJunkie.com.
Sweden’s Pannie Kianzad and Finland’s Eeva Siiskonen will duke it out for initial 135 title. Both Kianzad (134.8) and Siiskonen (134.3) came in on weight.
Kainzad (6-0) is undefeated having finished Megan van Houtum in her CWFC debut. This will be the debut of Siiskonen in the promotion, having two finishes t her credit.
Also on the undercard, Anna Elmose (134.6) will take on Emma Delaney (135.7).
MMA Super Heroes will feature another tournament heading to their card in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
In the strawweight grand prix semi-finals, Camila Lima takes on Virna Jandiroba and Aline Sattelmayer faces Marília “Chocolate” Santos. The winners will square off later that night for the tournament crown. Howver, Santos came in at 125 pounds, so may have disqualifed herself from the finals.
In a non-tounament bout, Ariane Lipski battles Daiane Firmino in a strawweight encounter.
Cortney Casey looks for her third profession win as she takes on Gina Iniong at PXC in Manila, Philippines. This will stream on PXC’s livestream channel.
Arizona’s Casey (2-1) won her PXC debut this past June. The former Tuff-n-uff amateur champion has finished in both of her pro wins.champion.
Hometown fighter Iniong (3-1) is coming off a very close split decision over veteran Mei Yamaguchi at her last PXC bout.
In other pro MMA bouts:
Intense Cage Fight returns to Great Falls, MT and will feature an amateur flyweight bout between Hannah Kampf and DJ Morrision.
Wombat Sports will be there live to cover the fight, so follow us @WombatSports for results.
In other amateur action:
Tori Nelson (c) vs. Victoria Cisneros – WIBA welterweight title & vacant UBF World welterweight title
Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Alejandra Marina Oliveras (c) vs. Erica Anabella Farias – WBC World light welterweight title
In other boxing action:
The XFC has announced the first five female bouts of their second Brazilian season, and it will prove to be a truly international affair.
On September 27 in Araraquara, Brazil, the XFC will kick off their 125 tournament and crown a strawweight tournament champion.
The co-main event on the card will be the finals of the season 1 strawweight tournament as Vanessa Guimaraes (3-2) battles Vanessa Melo (3-2).
The flyweight tournament kicks off with 8 fighters from 5 different countries vying for the title.
The matches will stream for free on XFCmma.com.
The promotion is also planning an 115 tournament for this season, and have announced this week Viviane Sucuro (5-0) will take part. Succuro will be making her 115 debut.
After the news of Marloes Coenen and Julia Budd signing to Bellator, Talita Nogueira will be joining them on the roster.
Having won Brazil’s Female Fighter of the Year in 2013 and being a multiple time BJJ world champion, Nogueira is undefeated and has finished all of her opponents. She was in talks with the UFC last month before deciding to take the Bellator contract.
Bellator president Scott Coker stated in an interview with The MMA Hour he is in talks with two more fighters for the division.
He also broke the news a second “lighter” women’s division will be added in the next three months.
The Ultimate Fighter 20 competitors are back on social media tweeting, instragramming, and facebook sharing to make up for lost time. Before they left the set, they helped UFC owner Lorenzo Fertitta with the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. You can watch the video here.
MMAJunkie is reporting the finale of the season will happen December 12 at the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas. It will air on Fox Sports 1.
The show starts September 10 on Fox Sports 1.
Sara McMann was complaining about the grip spray they use on the canvas in the octagon. The TUF 20 competitors also complained about the “sandy texture” during the show tapings.
It seemed no one had a better time at SummerSlam than the Four Horsewomen. After rubbing elbows with the WWE stars, they were front row to watch the action. Company owner and star Stephanie McMahon even flashed the “Four Horsewomen” symbol at the quartet.
After the show, the Horsewomen helped McMahon with her ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. You can watch it here.
We are happy to be a part of MMAJam.ca as we will on a regular basis offering an article or two to their site. Our first contribution talks about beauty in the violent sport of MMA.
Cyborg Justino is currently at Phunket Top Team in Thailand to help her slim down and get some Muay Thai training in for her bantamweight debut in December. She stated she isn’t interested at all in signing with Bellator and is focused on fighting UFC champ Ronda Rousey.
Bellator president Scott Coker stated that Gina Carano is probably not interested in going to Bellator because Carano wants to drop to 135.
After her loss this past weekend, Noelia Molina jumped into the crowd and attacked a fan. You can watch video here.
Shayna Baszler is training with long time coach Josh Barnett for her upcoming UFC fight. InvictaFC vet Kaitlin Young has moved to L.A. and is helping her train.
Munah Holland told MMA Jam Live that she is planning on fighting at InvictaFC 9. She was in line to be on InvictaFC 8, but they couldn’t find room for her.
Scheduled Fight Results
Sara McMann rebounded from her first loss by getting the split decision over former InvictaFC champion Lauren Muprhy at UFC Fight Night 47 in Bangor, ME. McMann handed Murphy her first loss.
McMann was able to take down Murphy throughout the match, but Murphy was able to be a little more offensive off her back. The second round saw some punching exchanges before McMann took down Murphy again. Down two rounds, Muprhy was able to get some elbows off of side control in the third, but the time expired.
McMann improves to 8-1 and gets back in the title hunt.
Atomweight star Catherine Costigan gains her 5th straight win with a submission win over France’s Noelia Molina at Cage Warriors in Dublin, Ireland.
Costigan was dominant throughout the fight, with Molina being warned several times for holding the cage. Costigan got the armbar sunk in and Molina was fighting it off for a while. Costigan readjusted as Molina picked her in the face unintentionally. The referee stopped the fight, but stated it was a technical submission at 2:14 round 1
Costigan remains undefeated and solidifies her spot as one of the top atomweights in Europe.
Korean reality show star Song Ga-Yeoun won her debut fight in impressive fashion at RoadFC in Seoul, South Korea. She defeated Japan’s Emi Yamamoto.
Song was aggressive from the get-go, pushing forward with a flurry of punches on Yamammoto. A trip takedown into the mount and unanswered ground and pound cause the ref to stop the contest at 2:23 of round 1.
On other Pro MMA bouts:
In amateur action:
A historic card was held as Nordic Coliseum had their first ever all pro women’s boxing in Gatineau, Canada.
In what was a heated battle, Olivia Gerula defeated Kaliesha West by unanimous decision in the main event. The co-main saw amateur champion Lita Mae Button defeat Maureen Riordon by unanimous decision in what were both fighters pro boxing debuts.
In other action:
Amanda Serrano gained her third different weight division belt in dramatic fashion over the weekend in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She defeated WBO lightweight title by knockout in round 6.
Having won belts in featherweight and light featherweight, she continues her eight fight win streak and improves to 21-1-1. She will fight Jackie Trivilino in a September.
Five female bouts were held in Guerrero, Mexico as Jessica Gonzalez and Estrella Valverde fought to a split draw for the interim WBC bantamweight title. Gonzalez was the champion going in and will retain the title.
In other bouts on the card:
In Savonlinna, Finland Eva Wahlstrom successfully defended her EBU super featherweight title for the first time, getting an unanimous decision over Djemilla Gontaruk. She remains undefeated at 11-0-1.
In a fight in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Julieta Andrea Cardozo defeated Norma Elizabeth Diaz Caucota by unanimous decision
In action Friday night, Marion Reneau defeated pro debuter Maureen Riordon by armbar at 4:15 of round 1. The bantamweight gets her third straight first round victory and her first submission win as a pro.
Saturday morning at RoadFC, Hyo-Kyung Song defeated Hazuki Kimura by TKO 2:21 of round 2 in Gumi, South Korea.
Fernanda Soledad Alegre successfully defended her WBO light welterweight title, getting a second round TKO over Dalia Vasarhelyi in Buenos Aires, Argentina on Friday.
Also In boxing action Friday, Kristin Gearhart and Ashleigh Curry fight to a split draw in Chicago.
Jemyma Betrian has an opponent for her pro mma debut August 10th. Washington’s Hadley Griffith is looking to recover after a loss this past weekend to take on the Muay Thai standout at Chaos At The Casino 5 in Inglewood, CA.
Betrian, a champion in Muay Thai, has been training with UFC champion Ronda Rousey for her switch to MMA. Griffith also have a Muay Thai background and looks to hand Betrian her first loss in MMA.
The event will be headlined by Marina Shafir taking on Amanda Bell in a featherweight battle.
Rising atomweight prospect Catherine Costigan will once again battle in her hometown of Dublin, Ireland as she will take on Monaco’s Noelia Molina at Cage Warriors 70 August 16.
Costigan (4-0) has recovered nicely after a three year absence due to injury, winning three straight. Molina will be dropping to 105 for the bout, and hasn’t seen action in a cage since her loss to Joanne Calderwood in 2012. She has been active in the Muay Thai scene in Europe however.
The fight will stream on MMAJunkie.com August 16.
Brazil will have a very busy August and early September as Damadeferromma.com has announced several bouts in the country.
Ana Julaton will be holding a media day August 6 at the House of Ryu in Las Vegas to help promote her upcoming fight against Ann Osmond at OneFC August 29th in Dubai, which will stream on OneFC.com. More info can be found at by clicking the picture on the right.
Sunday at 2:30 p.m. pst/5:30 p.m. est on the podcast, we will have veteran Muay Thai fighter Kate McGray, who will be returning to MMA as she takes on Maria Rios at National Fight Alliance’s event in California.
No rumors this week. Expect some next week.
After their first strawweight battle took place last week, the UFC is ready to bring some more international 115 talent in as Poland’s Joanna Jedrzejczyk will battle Brazil’s Juliana Lima at UFC on Fox 12 in San Jose, CA, which will stream on UFC Fight Pass.
The undefeated Jedrzejczyk (6-0) is coming off a KO victory over Rosi Sexton in June and had a quick turnaround when the UFC came knocking. With the contract came a drop from 125 to 115, but it seems the Polish star has adjusted nicely, making 115 on the button at weigh-ins.
Same couldn’t be said of Lima (6-1), who came in initially at 117 pounds, and then re-weighed at 116.5. Since she missed weight, she will be deducted 20% of her fight purse. Some controversy arose when main eventer Matt Brown came in overweight and will not be deducted from his fight pay because of confusion from the California State Athletic Commission doctor gave confusing instructions to both fighters. Lima tried to make weight but still missed, while Brown thought the doctor had ordered him to stop cutting weight instead of simply advising him not to.
Lima’s only loss was to InvictaFC title challenger Katja Kankaanpaa by decision.
WMMA Round-up got an interview with Jedrzejczyk after the weigh-in and you can watch it here.
In other pro MMA bouts:
The MMA Expo in New York will crown amateur champions as Fighters Source will have a card in “The Big Apple”.
Susie Wyatt-Walters will battle Angela Hancock for the flyweight title and Fernanda Araujo takes on Danielle Gallagher for the bantamweight title.
In other amateur bouts:
Christina Hammer is looking to take a second division world title as she takes on former welterweight champion Anne Sophie Mathis for the vacant WBO light middleweight title in Dessau, Sachsen-Anhalt, Germany.
Hammer (17-0) is undefeated and is the current WBO and WBF middleweight champion. Eight of her wins were within the distance.
Mathis (27-3) is the current WBF light middleweight champion winning the belt in June. She was on a 22 fight win streak before suffering back to back losses two two of the best in the world; Holly Holm and Cecilia Braekhus.
Anabel Ortiz will attempt to defend her WBA minimumweight title for the second time as she takes on Neisi Torres in Epazoyucan, Hidalgo, Mexico.
Ortiz (14-3) is on a four fight win streak Torres (12-2-1) won four her her past 5.
In other boxing matches:
I have been wanting for a while to write to the new influx of fans that came during the Rousey/UFC era and welcome you to what I have been writing about for the past 6 years. Love her or hate her, Ronda Rousey had driven in you guys and gals into the fold and not complaining one bit about it.
I should also recognize those fans who have came along as Invicta started to gain steam and are realizing how these ladies’ passion and drive translates in a cage. As strong and talented as they are on the inside of the cage, many are more than happy to take a picture with a fan or answer a tweet.
I sometimes feel, however, you are only getting part of this picture. The UFC is by no means WMMA as a whole, and there is a world load of talent put there that not only helped develop the sport to where it is today, but new talent we could see become the next superstars.
I have been obsessed with the women’s divisions for a while now, and have dedicated my life to covering every aspect. I know you may have lives (unlike me) and may not have the time I do to watch many, many hours of fights and research many new and upcoming fighters. My hope for this site is to educate you in less time.
I also want to open your eyes to the talented that isn’t in the UFC quite yet and those fighters who are pioneers before Dana White would have ever thought about bring female fighters in. WMMA is more than Ronda Rousey, and without those who came before her and those gals that actually dared to want to face Rousey, she wouldn’t be where she is today.
Don’t get me wrong, Rousey deserves a lot of credit to bringing the women’s divisions in the UFC. Without fighters like Shayna Baszler, Tara LaRosa, Gina Carano, and yeah even Miesha Tate, Rousey wouldn’t have even considered going into MMA. There are many gals that paved the way for her to take it to the next level. Feel free to look up old fights and see how these fighters set the table and made the women’s divisions acceptable in the MMA world. I recommend Julie Kedzie versus Gina Carano first and work your way from there.
The early part of the year has been slow in terms of the UFC and Invicta, but you may have missed out on some developing international talent making waves of their own. Brazil’s MMA Super Heroes and the XFC have been streaming female fights and many were well worth watching. DEEP-JEWELS, who can trace their linage back over a decade, has finally started to stream in the US, and with talent like Seo Hee Ham, Mizuki Inoue, and Ayaka Hamsaki, they will continue to send talent to Invicta.
Cage Warriors has invested a lot in their women’s divisions as well. I am already seeing stars in atomweight Catherine Costigan and bantamweight Agnieszka Niedzwiedz, plus Joanna Jedrzejczyk just signed to the UFC. They too stream female fights (for free) and well worth a watch on a Saturday afternoon.
If you have ever thought about watching Invicta, now is a great time. You know all those strawweights that just signed to the UFC, and more than half of the bantamweights? Invicta developed them. The promotion doesn’t see any signs of slowing as they replenished their 115ers already and look to beef up their 135ers shortly. By the way, there are more divisions out there including the 105ers, the 125ers, and 145ers. Invicta’s 155 division will give a lot of power as well once it starts on the next card and goes to show the growth of WMMA as a whole.
Amateur women’s divisions are growing and have been over the past four years. Many organizations such as Tuff-n-uff and NAAFS has done a great job of promoting great up and coming talent, and several organizations like Survivors’ Fighting Alliance are going to make new stars we could be seeing in the UFC in the coming years. Remember, access to female fights could be easy as driving a few minutes to your local arena. Take it in live too.
You have come in at a great time for the sport. With more fights and more access, if you have an hour or two a month you could easily see more action on cards that aren’t under the UFC banner. Be open to seeing new fighters no matter what weight class or promotion. Many streams are free, with some worth wild ones at only $10.
If you have questions feel free to ask. If you see a fighter I need to take a look at, tell me. I am going to give you as much info as possible to when and where fighters are fighting and if you can watch on stream.
Again, welcome to the WMMA world and take it all in. Thank you for supporting these fighters and helping make this sport as popular as it’s been.
After a very long wait, InvictaFC has announced their 8th card, and the announcement didn’t disappoint.
September 6 will be the date for the show, which will once again emanate from Kansas City. All the fights will be live on UFC Fightpass.
The main event will feature atomweight champion Michelle Waterson taking on Japan’s Yasuko Tamada. Waterson (11-3) will be defending her belt for the first time after having won the belt from Jessica Penne last year. She is on a four fight win streak.
Tamada (15-8-3) has won three straight fights under the JEWELS banner and is currently #6 in the Unified rankings. She is a nine year veteran of the sport.
In the co-main event, the vacant InvictaFC strawweight title will be up for grabs as former XFC champion Stephanie Eggink will take on Katja Kankaanpää. Eggink (4-1) won the XFC title by defeating TUF 20 participant Angela Magana by triangle choke in September. She also has a decision win over TUF 20 fighter Heather Clark.
Kankaanpää (9-1-1) is a staple of Invicta, having went unbeaten in nine fights before losing to Joanne Calderwood. With wins over Ais “The Bash” Daly and Mei Yamaguchi, she recently got back on the winning track defeating Alyona Rassohyna in May.
What was the most exciting announcement in our opinion is the rubber match between Roxanne Moddafferi and Tara LaRosa. The first 2 fights are the stuff of legend in the WMMA community. LaRosa defeated Modafferi by unanimous decision in 2006 in their first outing, with Modafferi gaining a split decision win in 2010, garnering it “Match of the Year” at the WMMA Press Awards. The third fight looks to be a show stealer.
India Gomes has foregone her title match and will drop to 135 to face Tonya Evinger on another match announced for the card. Gomes (10-2) was the #1 contender for the featherweight title, but had expressed interest as of late to drop to 135. She has won four straight and has wins over Leslie Smith and Hiroko Yamanaka. Her only losses were to Amanda Nunes and UFC champion Ronda Rousey.
Other matches announce include:
For those wondering about Cyborg Justino – she is set to possibly fight on the next card. She is doing a test cut to 135.
InvictaFC president Shannon Knapp stated she will have more announcement in the upcoming weeks on InvictaFC 9. She is planning on getting at least 2 or 3 cards in before the end of the year.
All past InvictaFC matches are now on UFC Fight Pass, and all of Invicta’s future matches will be as well, including the live ones.