After Close Fight, Roxanne Modafferi and Tara LaRosa Are Still Friends

For two women who just spent fifteen minutes beating on one another, Roxanne Modafferi and Tara LaRosa sure seem like a cordial pair. It makes sense if you saw the pre-fight video where they smiled and joked about how they were going to smash each other at Friday night's Moosin event.

Only they weren't really joking, as anyone who saw the fight knows. In what was a rematch of their 2006 scrap both women threw everything they had at one another, only this time it was Modafferi who got her hand raised when the decision was announced.

You might think that a loss in a fight as close as this one would sting a bit for LaRosa, especially so soon afterwards. And yet there she is recounting her attempts to punch her way out of a triangle choke on a pay-per-view event as if she's talking about an intramural softball game that she just played in.

This is the sort of thing you want to show to anyone who calls MMA a barbaric sport.

It's tempting to chalk these almost uncomfortably friendly exchanges up to gender differences. Free from the bounds of machismo that hold male fighters back, Modafferi and LaRosa are free to treat their bout as nothing more than a spirited competition, or so the most simplistic possible theory might suggest.

It's not a life-or-death matter, and it's certainly not personal between these two. They are the anti-Rashad Evans and "Rampage" Jackson in that sense.

But if we look a little deeper, it probably has more to do with the actual people involved than the gender of those people.

Just look at Modafferi. Her awkward sincerity, her willingness to rep the "Helwanabe Nation" on her sponsor banner – that's not your average woman to begin with.

But especially since we're kicking off a week that guarantees us no shortage of intensely personal trash talk at UFC 114, it's refreshing to see two fighters who have demonstrated that you don't need a lot of hate to produce a good fight.

Enjoy it now, because something tells me Jackson and Evans won't be giggling in the locker room together once they hit Las Vegas.

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