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Tag: Invicta

Invicta FC 4: Esparza vs. Hyatt — Complete Main Card Video, Prelim Insanity, Photos + More


(Complete Invicta FC 4 main card broadcast, courtesy of Invicta FC)

Saturday’s Invicta FC 4 event at Memorial Hall in Kansas City, KS, was supposed to be a significant step forward for the all-female promotion, as the main card was presented as an Internet pay-per-view for the first time. (Previously, Invicta’s events had been streamed online for free.) Unfortunately, the broadcast turned out to be a technical fiasco. Due to issues with payment processing and an uncooperative streaming partner, paying customers were unable to log on to watch the event. Even after the paywall was removed — and full refunds were offered to those who had already shelled out cash — the stream was still unreliable.

It was a worst-case-scenario for Invicta FC, whose budding fanbase might be wary of paying for similar broadcasts in the future. In a post-event interview with Ben Fowlkes at MMAJunkie, Invicta president Shannon Knapp seemed to acknowledge that securing a TV deal for her promotion has become more critical than ever, in the wake of their failed iPPV experiment.

As for the fights themselves? They certainly had their moments, although the main card was further cursed by a near-total lack of stoppages. In the headliner, former collegiate wrestler Carla Esparza and late-replacement Bec Hyatt waged war in Invicta’s first strawweight (115 pounds) title fight. Esparza’s relentless takedowns and top control helped her win all five rounds on the judges’ scorecards, but the colorful Aussie didn’t make it easy for her, stinging Esparza with her striking every time the women were on their feet.

The event’s official “Fight of the Night” award went to Alexis Davis and Shayna Baszler, who turned in a fantastic grappling battle that ended in the third round when Davis put Baszler to sleep with a rear-naked choke. It was the only bout on the main card that didn’t go to the scorecards. We suggest that you skip to the 2:02:59 mark of the video above to watch the fight — or just check out these two photos that tell the story pretty well by themselves…

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Hot Fighter Alert: 16 Photos of Model/MMA Prospect Paige VanZant


(Photo courtesy of 12gaugepaigevanzant.com. Click image for full-size version.)

Props to BabesofMMA and MMAJunkie for turning us on to Paige VanZant, a 2-0 professional MMA fighter who will be facing Tecia Torres on the prelims of this Saturday’s Invicta 4: Esparza vs. Hyatt event in Kansas City.

A model and student-athlete since childhood, the 18-year-old fighter began training in MMA when she was 15, and currently trains at the House of RYU in Las Vegas. Paige began competing this year, first picking up an amateur win in April, then winning decisions in professional matches against Jordan Gaza and Amber Stautzenberger. (She’s also done ring girl gigs for Shark Fights and Ultimate Reno Combat.) According to this Examiner article, Paige likes wrestling and throws, doesn’t enjoy getting hit in the face, and her future goals include opening a restaurant and fighting Cris Cyborg.

Check out lots more of our favorite Paige VanZant photos in the gallery after the jump — as well as four bonus videos of Paige chatting, fighting, and steam-mopping — and follow her life on Facebook and Twitter.

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Invicta FC Sends Undefeated 135′er Sara McMann To Strikeforce


(“Great to have you aboard, Sara! Now what size latex bodysuit do you wear?”)

By George Shunick

In a press release distributed yesterday, upstart women’s MMA promotion Invicta FC announced that they were sending bantamweight contender Sara McMann to Strikeforce. McMann is a perfect 6-0 in MMA — including wins over Shayna Baszler, Hitomi Akano, and Tonya Evinger — and won a silver medal in women’s freestyle wrestling at the 2004 Olympics in Athens. McMann was originally slated to fight for Invicta’s bantamweight title in her next appearance, but now that she is in Strikeforce, a title shot against Ronda Rousey seems quite plausible if she can make it through her first fight. Neither the date nor opponent for McMann’s Strikeforce debut have been announced yet.

It’s not every day that a fight promotion willingly sends one of its top contenders and budding stars to a competing promotion. However, according to President Shannon Knapp, Invicta’s goals aren’t based on hanging on to specific fighters:

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[Fight Videos] Invicta FC 1: Inaugural Event Shows Broad Appeal

(Leslie Smith vs Kaitlin Young, via IronForgesIron.com)

Invicta FC 1 wasn’t the first promotion to feature an all-female fight card, nor did they invent the MMA livestream, but last night they paired the two beautifully for a groundbreaking show that will undoubtedly do wonders for WMMA. The online broadcast is said to have peaked at 100k viewers, some four-times their initial projection.

Overall the show had a professional, polished appearance. The familiar voice of Mauro Renallo carried the commentary team with the sort of obvious, gender-based puns that we would never personally sink t…oh, right. The recently unemployed “King Mo” kept it 100 on the mic, but casual doesn’t always equal comfortable or competent, and Jon Anik can breath a little easier this morning. Alongside Lawal, Julie Kedzie called the fight from a fighter’s perspective, and with a little more experience she could transition well into that roll.

While one of Invicta’s stated goals is to develop clearly defined weight classes, the fighters will have to do their part when it’s time to step on the scales. With four fighters missing weight for the inaugural event, some of them badly, there’s still much work to be done.

As for the fights, it was an overall entertaining card. Videos and a recap are after the jump.

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The Extremely Important Invicta FC 1 Watching Party

No way I’m not using this picture again.

What up, Potato Nation, it’s your boy ReX13 here at the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall in Kansas City, ready to watch some ladies fight. I realize some of you have dirty-ass opinions about women’s MMA, and to you assholes I say this: I think there’s an NBA game on or something. Is the NFL draft still on? How’d my Carolina Panthers do? Actually, don’t answer that, just exit stage left. For the rest of you, let’s party: we got a badass card to watch.

Since the whole thing is streaming for free right here, I’m going to forego an actual play-by-play and just drop observations as the night goes on. I’m also ready to grab snapshots and video of the things you can’t see, so expect butt shots of Natasha Wicks. I’m all for girl power, but I also know what my Nation likes.

One more note: they are trying to disable the media with a light show and deafening dubstep. Pray for me.

Come on in, the show starts at 8pm ET. Until then, feel free to tweet your best #BadPickUpLinesAtInvictaFC at me, because I’m immature.

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Notes From the Invicta Weigh-Ins

 I don’t know how you have a staredown with a French accent, but I’m pretty sure Romy Ruyssen (right) is doing it.

So let’s get this out of the way:  I live in Kansas.

No, I don’t know what the hell a jayhawk is.  I’m not actually from here.

Anyways, Invicta Fighting Championships is going down just a short drive away in Kansas City, so I was quick to accept when I was offered a chance to be a member of the fight media for the inaugural Invicta FC card.

There were a few hiccups at the weigh-ins:  for some reason, they did not set up a raised platform for me to set up upon. As a result my pictures and video were of decidedly low quality. (As a recompense, please enjoy a few pictures courtesy of Invicta’s own photographer, Esther Lin.)

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Hot Potato: Natasha Wicks Is Back, Baby [25 PHOTOS]


(Full gallery is after the jump.)

When Natasha Wicks was released from the UFC in December 2009, she took a little part of our hearts with her. But in the greatest MMA comeback since Boetsch vs. Okami, our favorite curly-haired blonde is returning to ring girl duty for Invicta Fighting Championships’ all-female debut show, April 28th in Kansas City. In honor of this fantastic news, we’ve decided to pull together our 25 all-time favorite Natasha Wicks photos in the gallery below. Enjoy, and show Natasha some love on her Facebook fan page and @NatashaWicks!

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