UFC on ESPN+ 14 Preview

ufc-espn+14As the women’s game has evolved the UFC has attempted to evolve with it by providing more opportunities to fight.

That has created a strange issue with the women’s division of fighting though as the UFC is left with a difficult division of talent.

The women have always been at a different level if only because they have not been fighting nearly as long as the men have.

The evolution of the women’s game is still behind the men as there aren’t as many female athletes with a strong base in all aspects of MMA fighting.

It will get here eventually but women’s combat sports have always been slow-moving with far fewer women choosing to get hit in the face.

The game does continue to evolve despite the lagging behind of the men but the UFC has attempted to speed things along and in turn, have thinned out their talent pool.

When the UFC first introduced women they began with the Bantamweight division because that was the weight class for the superstar Ronda Rousey.

Every woman had to then get to that 145 lbs weight class in order to fight in the UFC but that wasn’t necessarily the easiest for a number of top women fighters.

The UFC then expanded to include a 115 lbs weight class giving the smaller fighters a way into the UFC.

It still didn’t solve the problem of finding the right place for a number of the biggest names in the sport.

The UFC went on another expansion adding a Featherweight and Flyweight division but there was a problem with that.

Although bantamweight was beginning to figure themselves out with more talent coming into the division and the strawweight was exciting from the start the new divisions were created particularly for certain fighters.

The featherweight division was a direct response to the signing of Cris Cyborg who struggled to make bantamweight so the UFC created a place that made more sense for her and a handful of fighters that would provide some excitement.

That decision did provide some excitement but a strained relationship between the UFC and Cyborg left the division relatively quiet.mma-sidebar.fw

Then Cyborg lost the title and recently was cut from the UFC for even more disagreements leaving the future of the division in the hands of Amanda Nunes.

Flyweight allowed the UFC to split the difference between bantamweight and flyweight but it was essentially created for Valentina Shevchenko.

She was always a great fighter but was one of the smaller fighters in the bantamweight division and was too big for the strawweight division.

Any other size and she would have been champion but unfortunately, she was in between the two divisions.

That led to the UFC to create the flyweight division and give Shevchenko and fighters like Shevchenko a place to play.

Sure enough, Shevchenko took the belt and is currently holding serve as the champion of a division designed for her.

Unlike Cyborg, Shevchenko seems to be ready to be around for a while but like the featherweight division, there are few competitors ready to challenge the champion.

After beating Joanna Jędrzejczyk for the initial title she took on Jessica Eye and took another win.

Now the latest to step up will be Liz Carmouche who is making her run after being fairly inactive since her historic bantamweight title fight.

After fighting for the first title in women’s UFC history she struggled through the rest of her time in the UFC.

Winning some and losing other fights she could never find the rhythm that title challengers need.

After two straight wins at flyweight, she gained enough momentum to take on the champion and look to shock the world.

Shevchenko is looking to continue working towards a legacy and become a great champion as the talent continues to grow in women’s MMA.

ufc-espn+14

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