It is crazy to think women have been fighting in the UFC for less than a decade after Ronda Rousey signed with the UFC. We look at five of the best women's title fights in UFC's history.
We count today at three of the best women’s title fight in the history of the UFC which were ultra-competitive and showcased the grittiness of the women’s on display:-
3) Rose Namajunas vs Joanna Jedrzejczyk 2 (UFC 223)
The first bout between these two had ended with a knockout in the first round, a surprising result for Rose which defied expectations. Joanna thought Rose had got lucky the first time round and set out to take her revenge and the strawweight title back at UFC 223.
Despite out striking the champion by over 50 strikes in a fight that showcased the technical prowess of both fighters on the feet, Joanna would find herself on the wrong side of a decision. A fight that played out mostly on the feet, Namajunas came on strong in the first two rounds before fading a bit in the third and the fourth.
Thug Rose would land a takedown with just 25 seconds left in the fifth round, which served as the difference-maker for the judges as they gave Namajunas a unanimous decision (49-46, 49-46- 49-46) in her first title defense.
2) Amanda Nunes vs Valentina Shevchenko 2(UFC 215)
The first fight between the two best women in the UFC was a three-round match that went the way of the Brazilian.
By the second time they met, Nunes had dethroned Miesha Tate while finishing Ronda Rousey emphatically to build up her resume as one of the best. Shevchenko, who had presented problems for the champ first time round, was someone who would test the cardio of Nunes, which was considered as a weakness in her armor.
Nunes started the fight uncharacteristically slowly, preserving her gas as she fought with a lack of her trademark aggression to remain in the battle till the end. Valentina increased her output as the fight progressed and landed more strikes (104-84) than Nunes.
Nunes in return landed three takedowns, two of which came in the last round, as she took home a super close split decision 47-48, 48-47 and 48-47 to defend her title successfully for the second time.
1) Weili Zhang vs Joanna Jedrzejczyk (UFC 248)
Instantly named as the greatest women’s title fight in UFC history, this fight solidified Zhang as a true champion while also raising her stock.
Joanna would lose for the fourth time in her last six fights in the UFC but turned in a valiant performance, which saw her fight through even with a grievous case of a hematoma. Even though fans may not like Joanna’s personality sometimes, she sure can lay on a showcase of a fight considering she is on this list for the third time.
With judges scorecard of 48-47, 48-47 and 47-48, Zhang took home a unanimous decision in her favor in a match where her power was on exhibit. Zhang got a little tired by the end of the fifth, but she still went after Joanna with bombs while also mixing things with a takedown.
One of the best back-and-forth matches in the UFC, this could have gone either way considering Joanna landed more strikes than the champ.
It's been unbelievable, watching women compete in the UFC for almost a decade now. Dana White himself has come a long way since 2011 when he stated "Women will never fight in the UFC" in a quick interview with TMZ, learn more about it on Doc Sports.
Ronda Rousey breaking out as one of the first crossover stars in the UFC helped Dana in changing his position towards women fighting inside the octagon. We as fans would have missed out on the greatness of current champions like Amanda Nunes and Valentina Shevchenko without the trailblazing by Ronda who paved the way.
The standard of women’s mixed martial arts has increased exponentially since then, with fighters getting better by the day.