Last night was the last episode of The Ultimate Fighter: A Champion Will Be Crowned. Tomorrow night will be the LIVE Finale to crown the first ever UFC Women’s Strawweight Champion. On the last episode we saw 2 Semi Final fights to determine the Finale Tournament fight. This was another episode I really liked because it didn’t have a lot of behind the scenes stuff and just focused mostly on the 2 fights of the night.
#1 Carla Esparza vs. #4 Jessica Penne
– Sometimes I hate when friends fight. A fight like this that was scheduled to go 3 rounds did. While Penne and Esparza both had some good punches, I felt like they weren’t hitting to win. Carla Esparza is the #1 ranked Women’s Strawweight fighter, this whole tournament she needed to prove why. Instead only her first fight was ended by submission, the other 2 have been by decision. As the current strawweight champion she should’ve been proving why she deserved to get the UFC Strawweight Championship. I like Esparza, don’t get me wrong, I just feel like if you are the best you need to prove why you are the best. Take Ronda Rousey, every fight she treats it the same, to go in and win as quick as possible no matter who it is. That should be EVERY fighters goal. Instead Esparza and Penne both treated this fight like it should go to decision. I hate decisions. The only reason a decision should happen is if you can’t knock someone out or make them submit after you have been trying. Not let’s dance and punch around the cage for 3 rounds. Granted, like I said Penne and Esparza did get some punches in, their faces proved that. I just felt like they both held back way too much for it being a Semi Final match and so much on the line.
#7 Rose Namajunas vs. #14 Randa Markos
– This fight was much quicker. It only lasted 1 round when Rose made Randa submit via kimura. I don’t know what it is, I think it may be Rose’s cocky attitude but I just don’t like her. However, I will give her credit that each fight this season she has ended via submission and has been in it to win it. She has the attitude that I want in a fighter to go in and get the win as quick as possible. Rose at least seems hungry for the title.
This leaves us with #1 Carla Esparza (Team Pettis) vs. #7 Rose Namajunas (Team Melendez) in the finale tomorrow night LIVE on Fox Sports 1. With Rose being the only Team Melendez fighter to advance out of the prelims the odds were not on her side to make the final Team Pettis vs. Team Melendez.
Carla Esparza needs to learn a trick from Rose’s playbook and go into this fight planning winning by any means necessary. If this fight goes past the first round I will be upset. Rose is coming for the title and if Carla doesn’t give her a good fight I will lose a lot of the respect I’ve given Carla this season as being one of the best. The weight is on Carla’s shoulders but from what I’ve seen she can handle it, she just needs to make sure she brings it tomorrow night. Here is the card for tomorrow night:
Fight Pass Preliminary Card
Emily Kagan vs. Angela Hill
Aisling Daly vs. Alex Chambers
Fox Sports 1 Preliminary Card
Bec Rawlings vs. Heather Jo Clark
Joanne Calderwood vs. Seo Hee Ham
Tecia Torres vs. Angela Magana
Felice Herrig vs. Lisa Ellis
Fox Sports 1 Main Card
Jessica Penne vs. Randa Markos
Joe Proctor vs. Yancy Medeiros
KJ Noons vs. Daron Cruickshank
Jeremy Stephens vs. Charles Oliveira
Carla Esparza vs. Rose Namajunas