MMA Access: Invicta FC – The Dream Home For WMMA
By Christopher Jester
After successfully producing four events, Invicta FC may be venturing into their biggest event yet on April 5th. With Invicta FC’s previous successes and the achievement of women’s mixed martial arts headlining the recent UFC 157, the door is now open for women martial artists to take the world by storm and Invicta FC is the perfect home to showcase that.
Invicta FC is now the dream home for women mixed martial artists. The UFC may be the nirvana for bantamweight women fighters who want to take that next big step, but in the meantime Invicta FC is the only North American organization hosting the female weight classes that has the most depth and the most talent. Notwithstanding the fact that it has its own identity and has established a product that is quite impressive.
Invicta FC 5 should prove as a significant test on whether women’s mixed martial arts is on the precipice of going mainstream. It is a major event on several levels. One, it is the first major women’s event since Ronda Rousey’s victory at UFC 157. One of the questions going into this event is, did her success have any influence on the outlook of women’s MMA as a whole? Media has been eating up women’s mixed martial arts since that history making night, and even fair-weather MMA fans are now discussing women’s budding presence in the sport.
So what does this sudden rise in popularity do for Invicta FC? To answer this simply: it puts them on the receiving end of gaining the most out of this surging attraction to women’s role in MMA.
Invicta FC 5 is also a gem of an event, but not because of the success of Ronda Rousey. This is a stacked card from top to bottom that deserves its own merit. Headlining the event is the promotion’s atomweight Champion Jessica Penne (10-1) defending her title for the first time against “The Karate Hottie” Michelle Waterson (10-3). Co-headlining is a bout between Vanessa Porto (15-5) and Barb Honchak (7-2) that will determine Invicta FC’s first flyweight champion.
Despite two ‘Fight of the Year’ caliber bouts headlining the card, the biggest lure will come from the return of Cris Cyborg (10-1-1). This will mark her first fight since testing positive for a banned substance back in 2011 when she fought for Strikeforce. Initially her opponent was Ediane Gomes, but an injury allowed Fiona Muxlow (6-2) to step in on short notice to fight the former Strikeforce women’s featherweight champion. The question will be, can Cyborg still have the same success as she did in Strikeforce? One would hope so, because the idea is likely to put the winner of this bout against Marloes Coenen to determine Invicta FC’s first featherweight champion. This is exactly the sort of move that Cyborg needs to silence her critics and to put her back into the spotlight. A proposed Marloes Coenen versus Cris Cyborg rematch could be a major draw for Invicta FC, and should excite any fan of women’s mixed martial arts.
Other notable bouts on the card feature Sarah Kaufman (15-2), her last fight before migrating to the UFC, in a bout against Leslie Smith (5-2-1). Zoila Frausto Gurgel (12-2) faces Jennifer Maia (6-2-1) in a flyweight bout, Kaitlin Young (6-7-1) takes on Lauren Taylor (5-0) and Julia Budd (4-2) fights injury replacement Mollie Estes (1-1). While “Rowdy” Bec Hyatt (4-2) versus Jasminka Cive (5-0) rounds out the PPV portion of the card.
As Invicta FC continues to grow its roster and its product, it is without a doubt that it will remain the crowning jewel of women’s mixed martial arts. Standing nothing to lose, Invicta FC will continue to pioneer the women’s role in MMA in the direction of mainstream attention. Future stars are growing within its roster and sooner than later Invicta FC will show it has the worth to hurtle women’s mixed martial arts to a place where they are viewed just as equal as men.
Follow Christopher “sLapDatSuCKa” Jester on Twitter @sLapDatSuCka
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