After a busy weekend of about two dozen pro WMMA fights across the world, we have seen some interesting changes to Unfiied rankings.
Since InvictaFC 9 happened Saturday, the Unified Committee decided to include Saturday’s results. However, the DEEP-JEWELS results on Monday morning will be included in December’s rankings.
Also several inactive fighters have been dropped off the list…
InvictaFC champion Cyborg Justino has been left off the featherweight rankings due to inactivity. Bellator’s Marloes Coenen regains the top spot after her win over Annalisa Bucci. The undefeated Pannie Kianzad is now #2 in the division, followed by Bellator’s Julia Budd (#3) and Invicta’s Faith Van Duin (#4).
Bucci’s loss to Coenen drops her a spot to #6, and Talita Nogueira takes her place at #5. Maria Hougaard’s loss to Amanda Bell drops her out of the top 10, with Bell debuting at #9.Tweet (#8) and Gabrielle Holloway (#10) round out the featherweight top 10.
The top 5 in the strawweights remain the same this month (TUF 20 fighters are exempt from dropping out); however, Karolina Kowalkiewicz’s win over Mizunki Inoue at Invicta gains the Polish fight the #6 spot. Inoue drops to #10.
Lacey Schukman’s inactivity in the atomweight division drops her out of the rankings, giving Jodie Esquibel the #5 spot after her win over Nicdali Rivera-Colonac this past weekend. The rest of the top 10 remains the same.
Bantamweight stays pat this month.
Several flyweight fighters will be dropping this month and in December to strawweight, so we expect some major changes come the end of the month.
It was a busy weekend for Invicta as they have have signed more talent to their featherweight roster.
Andria Wawro will join a re-signed Amanda Bell to 145 division. Kelly McGill and Cassie Criasno has also signed to Invicta but will be dropping to 135 for the promotion.
The signings comes on the heels of Bellator announcing their featherweight division and signing InvictaFC vets Marloes Coenen and Julia Budd. Cyborg Justino and Ediane Gomes are dropping to bantamweight and the new signees will compliment two divisions in need of talent.
Wawro (3-1) has a win over Crisano by decision. A five year vet of the sport, she submitted Jessica Miele this past June.
The Maryland native Crisano (2-2) took a recent trip to Brazil to gain some experience. Her last match ended in controversy as the referee awarded her opponent the win due to disqualification.
Bell (2-2) got her biggest win of her career, defeating Marina Shafir a few weeks ago. She has won back to back since her last Invicta outing. She had changed gyms.and has made a vast improvement in her fighting.
McGill made her pro MMA debut in June with a first round TKO over Leslie Rodriguez. She has a 7 second KO as an amateur.
No word on when the four will make their InvictaFC debuts. We are expecting more signings in the coming week.
No word on when she will debut with the promotion.
The International MMA Federation tournament started this week with several female bouts. The finals will happen Saturday at the UFC Expo.
Here are the results so far. (Sorry for no countries or weight classes – they weren’t listed.)
Aleksi Nurminen def. Daniele De Santis by TKO (Strikes) 1:28 round 2
Amanda Ribas def. Micol Di Segni by unanimous decision
Aleksandra Milczarek def. Lisa Engelke by submission 2:03 round 2
Amanda Lino def. Andrea Whitney by TKO (Strikes) 2:21 round 1
Rachel Abou Abdallah and Florence Berthet received byes.
Grapplers Quest will have a all female superfight tournament Saturday at the UFC Expo in Vegas. It will be no time limit until someone taps. UFC fighter Cat Zingano and pro MMA flyweight Rahcael Cummins are set to take part.
Here is the quarterfinal bouts. Winner will be crowned the same day.
Nyjah Easton vs. Jennifer Chareunvong
Jennifer Perez vs. TBA
Cat Zingano vs. Liz Exell
Ila Erickson vs. Rachael Cummins
Pati Fontes vs. Gillian Silver
Chelsea Bainbridge Donner vs. Jessy Miele
Vivian Velez vs. Amanda Leve
Bre Stikk vs. tba
Kickboxing and Muay Thai champion Jemyma Betrian will make her transition to the MMA in August. Betrian (29-2-1 Muay Thai; 35-2-1 overall kickboxing) will face a yet-to-be-named opponent at Choas at the Casino 5 August 10 in Inglewood, CA.
She KOed Christi Brereton in her last match this past month at WCK Muay Thai in Temecula, California. She is currently training with UFC champion Rhoda Rousey. She will be fighting at strawweight.
The main event will feature Marina Shafir taking on Nikita Netjes. No word on if this will be streamed.
Lívia Renata Souza will be staying busy this summer before her fall debut in Invicta. Souza is fighting on Aug 21 against França Godoy at X-Fight MMA in Sao Paulo Brazil.
Cage Warriors did a great retrospective on Rosi Sexton this past week. It covers her promotional career from her first fight to her retirement from the sport this past month. You can watch it here.
On the podcast Sunday at 1 p.m. pst/4 p.m. est, we will be talking to Charmiane Tweet who is looking to return to Invicta, preparing for her boxing debut, and started to invite fighters from across North American to train with here.
InvictaFC 8 is now looking at a September date. Most likely date is September 20, the same day Miesha Tate will face Rin Nakai in Japan. Since that card will be on Fight Pass (and out of the country), would make sense to help promote the channel.
By the looks of it, UFC fighter Leslie Smith maybe an assistant coach for TUF 20. Gilbert Melendez and Smith have trained a great deal together.
UFC champion Ronda Rousey has her toughest challenge to date (in her own words) against Alexis Davis Saturday at UFC 175.
The fight has become about “BJJ vs. Judo”, as Judo black belt Rousey wants to prove her art is better than BJJ. Davis is a black belt in Japanese and Brazilian jiu-jitsu, and feels her skills on the ground will be able to negate the armbar, and she will tap Rousey.
Both weighed in Friday, with Rousey (135) and Davis (135) both coming in on weight.
The match will serve as the co-main event and will be live on ppv Saturday.
On Sunday, Sarah Moras and Alexis Dufresne will make their octagon debuts at The Ultimate Fighter 19 finale in Vegas live on Fox Sports 1.
Moras has a win over TUF 18 winner Juliana Pena, which Pena avenged in the semi-finals of the show. Moras went undefeated as an amateur and finished in all of her pro wins.
Dufresne (5-0) has finished all of her opponents in the first round with her longest match being 2:20. She got a 45 second TKO over Kim Couture in February, and will look to make her bantamweight debut in the UFC.
The match is set to air on Fox Sports 1 on the preliminary portion of the card.
In other pro bouts:
At Elite Warrior Challenge in Roanoke, VA, Rachel Sazoff faces Allison Haynes
Taila Santos takes on Geisyele Nascimento at UOC 1 in Panara, Brazil
In the only ammy fight (besides the IMMA Federation tournament) Jemma Jacques battles Katy Horlick at ICE FC in Manchester, England
Shannon O’Connell and Bronwyn Wylie will battle for the vacant WIBA super bantamweight title in Victoria, Australia.
O’Connell (9-3) will be dropping in weight for the bout, having been the WBF featherweight champion. She has five KOs to her credit.
Wylie (3-2) is looking for her first world title.
In other boxing action:
In Athens, Greece, Maria Semertoglou faces Jekaterina Lecko
Arely Mucino takes on Samson Tor Buamas in Guadalupe, Nuevo León, Mexico
DEEP-JEWELS has announced their next card. The promotion’s 5th event will take place August 9th in Tokyo. The news was broke for the US audience by the CJ Report.
No matches were announced, but will mark the return of 115 champion Ayaka Hamsaki. Hamasaki had surgery on her knee after her last fight, a loss to current UFC signee Claudia Gadelha at Invicta last July. It is susepcted Hamasaki will be defending her D-J title against either 115 tournament winner Emi Tomimatsu or InvictaFC vet Mizuki Inoue. Both are set to fight on the card.
Other announced for event include Naho Sugiyama, Miyoko Kusaka, Yuko Ohya, and Tamaki Usui.
Joeclyn Lybarger has signed a multi-fight deal with RFA. The promotion announced the signing Thursday. Lybarger (3-1) won her RFA debut with an unanimous decision over Rosa Acevedo in April.
Julie Kedzie is moving to Kansas City to fulfill her role as a full time matchmaker, commentator, and consultant for Invicta. With the move, she leaves her long time home of Albuquerque and her coaching and mentoring job at Jackson’s MMA. In the eight years at Jackson’s, she started one of the most recognized and accomplished female MMA teams in the country.
We look forward to her continuing efforts to improve and expand Invicta and it’s roster.
Interesting state we were discussing on twitter this week. Currently Invicta’s women’s divisions has more countries represent than the UFC’s women’s division.
Invicta (10): USA, Mexico, Canada, Brazil, Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Netherlands, Finland, and Poland
UFC (8): USA, Canada, Brazil, Australia, Scotland, Russia, Netherlands, and Finland
The UFC number could increase by two countries if Helena Harper (England) and Ais “The Bash” Daly (Ireland) is added to TUF 20.
Jessica Aguilar stated during a conference call for the World Series of Fighting 10 that she is being paid on par with the male champions under contract with the promotion. She has two more fights on her contract, including her upcoming title fight with Emi Fujino June 21 in Vegas, which will air on NBS Sports Net. She express she is going to “see what happens” after the contract expires to decide to stay with WSOF or look for other offers.
Aguilar has been doing vlogs to chronicle her training and life coming up to her defending her belt. You can watch them here.
Michelle Ould and Zolia Frausto have buried the hatchet. The two head a heated war of words in 2010 and was one of the most heated rivalries in WMMA. Four years later, tempers have mellowed and the two told us that hostilities are over.
For those who missed out, several connections between the Miss USA pageant and the world of female combat sports.
The winner, former Miss Nevada Nia Sanchez, is a black belt in Tae Kwan Do. Miss Virginia had wrestled for nine years on the boy’s team.
With Sanchez’s new role as Miss USA, Tuff-n-uff ring girl Stephanie Ann Cook is the new Miss Nevada.
On the podcast Sunday at 1 p.m. pst/4 p.m. est. we will have Brigitte Narcise, who will be facing Kaline Medeiros at CES in Lincoln, RI June 27.
Cage Warrior’s head Graham Boylan stated during a post event interview last weekend he is planning on doing an all female card (or two) by the end of the year. He has 29 female fighters under contract.
We are getting word that the reason Rin Nakai may not being coming to the U.S. to fight anytime soon is because of a lagging knee problem. Under US rules knee pads and taping are not allowed.
Two UFC newcomers will square off on FX Network in the US as a part of the UFC 174 prelims in Vancourver, Canada Saturday. Both Latourneau (134.5) and Phillips (135) made weight.
Canadian and TUF 18 vet Valerie Letourneau will be taking on last minute replacement American Elizabeth Phillips. Letourneau (5-3) won her last official fight in May 2013 with a 34 second TKO over Jordan Moore. Phillips (3-1) is riding a three fight win streak.
OneFC will once again have a female match as Malaysia’s Ella Tang will face Indonesia’s Desi Rahayu in Jakarta, Indonesia. This will stream on OneFC.com for $10 and will start at 2 a.m. pacific/5 a.m. est Saturday mourning.. Both made weight at 133 pounds for their bantamweight contest.
As speculation starts in terms of who will face who in the upcoming Invicta cards, several story lines have been developing recently or lingering for years.
For those recent fans to the women’s divisions and not aware of these, we complied a list for some rivalries to look out for.
Cindy Dandois and Marloes Coenen
Cindy Dandois made her MMA debut in what was then the biggest WMMA upset of all time. Dandois defeated former Strikeforce champion Marloes Coenen by unanimous decision in 2009. Dandois is planning on dropping to 135 in Invicta and looks to make the transition to the UFC. Coenen, still stinging from a loss to Cyborg Justino, would love to avenge the loss and a drop would get be back in the title hunt at bantamweight.
Michelle Ould and Zoila Frausto
Before Miesha Tate and Ronda Rousey, the most heated rivalry in WMMA was between Michelle Ould and Zoila Frausto. Their first meeting ended with Ould suffering an injury that sidelined her from competition for over a year. Ould soon blamed the humidity and sweat for the difficulty in fighting Frausto (they were fighting outside during the summer) and has wanted to avenge the loss. Frausto, who was already on Ould’s case at weigh-ins, took offence to some of Ould’s comment and a war of words broke out post fight. Even though the beef has cooled a bit several years later, there is opportunity for these two to resolve their issues.
Roxanne Modafferi and Tara LaRosa
This is a friendly rivalry that has brought some of the best matches to the cage. The two veterans and good buddies prove that you can see a great fight without any malice or hatred towards your opponent. LaRosa took their first fight in 2006 by unanimous decision. Four years later, Modafferi would avenge the loss by a split decision over LaRosa, a match the would win “WMMA Match of the Year” for 2010. Four years later, fans want to see the rubber match between the two and Invicta would be a meaningful place to settle the series.
Marina Shafir and the featherweight division
Marina Shafir may not be signed to InvictaFC yet, but it’s hard not to see the rising star of the 145 division not be a part of the top female promotion in the world. Either way Shafir has a target on her back.
The major one is the current featherweight champion Cyborg Justino, who sees a win over Shafir as way to get UFC bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey’s attention and goat her into a fight. Shafir state she wanted several fights first, but Cyborg was the ultimate goal.
Shafir doesn’t have an easy road ahead of her. Two other featherweights are wanting their shot at the rising prospect. Tuff-n-uff featherweight tournament champion Jessica Zomchik was on the way to facing Shafir, but Shafir decided to turn pro. Zomchik recently turned pro as well, and is still pursuing a match with Shafir.
Current InvictaFC signee Tamikka Brents has stated she wants make a name for herself getting a win over Shafir.
Lauren Murphy and Miriam Nakamoto
An injury ended their first match, but the bickering has heated up more since the match. Nakamoto felt she was winning until the injury, while Murphy felt she was taking the uphand. Without a clear winner, both have been on social media thowing verbal jabs at each other. We are still waiting for Nakamoto to heal up, which won’t be until at least the end of the year.
Considered one of the best amateur MMA promotions in the U.S., Tuff-n-uff has done a lot for the female fighters and have turned out stars that are currently in the UFC and Invicta.
The promotion is continuing their efforts to make world class fighters even after the tragic passing of founder and CEO Barry Meyer. His brother Jeff has taken his mission to continue producing talent and put on solid shows.
Saturday, the promotion announced their 20th anniversary show is set for June 7th at the Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas, in hopes to break the arena’s attendance record. You can get a free ticket by going to Unlvtickets.com. They are also seeking donations for the Three Square Food Bank and people are encouraged to bring a canned food item to the event.
The card will feature several female bouts including the finals of the Tuff-n-uff strawweight tournament. The winner between Jamie Moyle and Molly Wren-Holms will earn an Invicta contract and be declared tournament champion.
We talked to Jeff Meyer about the impact of the promotion throughout the years, the new partnership with Invicta, and what the future brings.
A Brazilian website is reporting the World Series of Fight is looking to book Cyborg Justino versus Holly Holm for sometime next year.
Justino is currently sign with Invicta, and she is at the end of her contract after her next match. InvictaFC president Shannon Knapp has told us that Justino will defend her 145 title against India Gomes in June.
As of now, Justino’s management has stated they are not interested in signing with the WSOF anytime soon.
Speaking of Invicta, Knapp is expected to make an announcement next week about the June event and a possible tv deal.
Should be noted the Fox and the UFC not only recognized InvictaFC in their graphics and commentary Wednesday, but they also used Invicta footage to pump up the fight between Sarah Kaufman and Leslie Smith. UFC and Fox never does this…
According to Dana White, Ronda Rousey requested to defend her title on the July 5th card. White noted that Cat Zingano was still dealing with “personal issues” and was the reason she wasn’t available. Miesha Tate stated this week she is picking Rousey to win over challenger Alexis Davis. Liz Carmouche refused to pick.
White also mentioned he is working on getting the Strikeforce fights on Fightpass. Due to a provision in their Strikeforce deal with Showtime, they aren’t allowed to air the complete fights anywhere. They would also need to edit sponsors out of the fights.
Fox will air it’s first female bout on national broadcast television as Miesha Tate and Liz Carmouche will face off in the co-main event on the “UFC on Fox 11” card in Orlando, FL. Both Tate (135.5) and Carmouche (135) made weight.
Both coming off losses, a win will get the one of them back in the title hunt.
The match will air on Fox Saturday night.
In other pro bouts:
At Kansas Fighting Alliance in Kansas City, MO, Trisha Clark takes on Amanda LaVoy
Crystal Stevens faces Rebecca Ruth at ShamrockFC in St. Louis, MO
Steelfist will have seven amateur bouts plus one pro bout in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Rachel Kemker vs. Killastina Matatohi (pro heavyweight)
Rianne Whiting vs. Danielle Donaldson (ammy 135 title)
At Fight Hard MMA in St. Charles, MO, Susie Wyatt faces Ronni Lawrence
Kelly Wisecarver takes on Kayla Kipp at EAC in Fredericktown, Ohio
In Absolute Action MMA in Williamstown, Kentucky, Kia Peppard battles Desiree Wilson (135)
Jennifer Darr fights Stephanie Alba at NFC in Duluth, Georgia
In UFA in Denver, CO, Selina Valdez-Montoya faces Latrisha Breidenbach
Erica Anabella Farias will defend her WBC lightweight title against Delfine Persoon Sunday in West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.
Farias (19-0) is looking for her 20th win and her 9th defense of her title. Persoon (28-1) is looking to put a fourth belt around her waste, as she is the current WIBF, WBF, and WIBA lightweight champion.
In a pair of bouts Buenos Aires, Argentina, Julieta Andrea Cardozo faces Maria Cecilia Roman and Alicia Monica Machaca battles Laura Soledad Griffa