The UFC have announced they will be creating a 145lb featherweight division, Holly Holm will take on Germaine de Randamie to determine the first ever Women’s Featherweight Champion.
We take a look at ten women who could be joining this new UFC division.
1. Cris ‘Cyborg’ Justino – 17-1-0 (1)
The woman who made the featherweight division possible. The pound-for-pound number 1 female fighter in the world, without a doubt ‘Cyborg’ will be part of this new division and is the odds on favourite to be the first challenger for the belt. She has been undefeated for the last decade, finishing 15 of her 17 wins via KO/TKO. During 2016 she has been competing for the UFC in 140 pound catchweight bouts, but recently declared she will no longer fight for the organisation unless they make her division. ‘Cyborg’ is not happy with the UFC’s decision to give Holly Holm and de Randamie the first title shot, she has taken to social media to say ‘I’m happy there’s a division. That’s not the 145 world title though it’s media manipulation dipped in gold‘. No doubt however, she will be first in line for a title shot. She is currently the number 1 ranked featherweight in the world, according to the Women’s Pro MMA World Rankings.
2. Cindy ‘Battlecat’ Dandois – 8-2-0
Perhaps the most underrated fighter in the world, Dandois is a vicious competitor who has a habit of finishing her opponents, she is a very versatile fighter with TKO and submission wins. She is most well known for her excellent Judo skills however, skills which could match that of Ronda Rousey. She holds wins over the likes of Marloes Coenen, Megan Anderson and a woman who beat Cyborg, Jorina Baars. She fights at bantamweight and featherweight, and for years now fans have been left puzzled as to why she has not yet been given the call up to the UFC. It appears that call is now right around the corner, thanks to the addition of the 145lb division. Last month she defeated Anjela Pink in just 13 seconds. She’s set to fight Yanan Wu at Kunlun Fights this Thursday. She is currently the number 2 ranked featherweight in the world, according to the Women’s Pro MMA World Rankings.
3. Julia ‘The Jewel’ Budd – 9-2-0
This former worldclass Canadian kickboxer has fought in top MMA promotions Strikeforce and Invicta FC, before recently moving to Bellator. Budd has not been defeated for over five years, and holds impressive wins over current title challenger Germaine de Randamie, aswell as top ranked competitors Arlene Blencowe, Charmaine Tweet and Gabrielle Holloway. She had four victories under the Invicta FC banner, before moving to Bellator in which she is now on a three fight winning streak at, this puts her winning streak to a total of seven. Many fighters have made the move from Bellator to the UFC, and with the introduction of the 145lb weight class, this could well be happening for Budd. She is currently the number 4 ranked featherweight in the world, according to the Women’s Pro MMA World Rankings.
4. Marloes ‘Rumina’ Coenen – 23-7-0
A former Strikeforce Women’s Bantamweight Champion, Amsterdam’s Coenen who is 35 years old is already a pioneer for women’s MMA, a veteran of the sport. She has been fighting as a pro for almost 17 years. She is known for being Cyborg’s toughest challenger to date. When the two fought back in 2013, Coenen was able to challenge Cris, and despite not winning the bout, she took her all the way to the fourth round, something which has never been done before. She too currently fights for Bellator MMA, however fans have been wanting to see the Dutch beauty compete on the big stage for years, a move to the UFC is imminent. She is currently the Number 3 ranked featherweight in the world, according to the Women’s Pro MMA World Rankings.
5. Charmaine ‘Not So Sweet’ Tweet – 9-5-0
Canada’s Tweet has displayed a significantly improved MMA game in the last 15 months with stoppage wins over the likes of Latoya Walker and Anna Barone. She had previously fought some of the best fighters in the world including Cyborg, Ronda Rousey, Julia Budd, Amanda Bell and many others. She is set to fight Megan Anderson at Invicta FC 21 in the main event on January 14, 2017. An impressive win over Anderson would certainly position Tweet for a major promotional debut for the UFC sometime later in 2017. She is currently the Number 5 ranked featherweight in the world, according to the Women’s Pro MMA World Rankings.
6. Megan Anderson – 7-2-0
Australia’s Anderson is a vicious competitor who holds three TKO wins and three submissions. She currently fights for Invicta FC and is on a three fight winning streak this year, with two first round TKO’s over Peggy Morgan and Amanda Bell. Anderson isn’t afraid to speak her mind, she recently blasted Cyborg, revealing that her weight cutting issues are ‘her own fault’, as well as criticising past PED use and saying ‘she wants to have such an advantage strength wise over her opponent so she tries to cut so much which is unhealthy’. With a win against Tweet, Anderson could set herself up for a potential title fight against ‘Cyborg’ for the UFC. She has the skills, marketable image and isn’t afraid to speak out, everything which the UFC loves in their top stars. She is currently the Number 6 ranked featherweight in the world, according to the Women’s Pro MMA World Rankings.
7. Bobbi-Jo Dalziel – 3-0-0
She may only have three fights, but former kickboxer Canada’s Dalziel is proving she is one of the best fighters in the world. She caught the attention of the MMA world earlier this year when she defeated longtime undefeated number 1 155lbs lightweight fighter Jozette Cotton to a dominant unanimous decision victory. She holds previous TKO wins over top contenders, Tamikka Brents and Andria Wawro. Dalziel recently spoke to us revealing she plans to move down to the 145lb division, as well as telling us a bit about her life, why she begun fighting and lots more. She is currently the Number 1 ranked lightweight in the world, according to the Women’s Pro MMA World Rankings.
8. Latoya ‘Black Mamba’ Walker – 5-1-0
The ‘Black Mamba’ is a power puncher and for years many Invicta fans have hailed her as the perfect match for ‘Cyborg’. Walker recently revealed she was retiring from MMA due to the low pay-outs telling us ‘My career and livelihood is not worth some cheap payout. Unfortunately this industry takes advantage of it’s fighters by paying out so little. Compare what top boxers and top MMA fighters make, it’s a shame’. No doubt with the UFC now introducing the 145 pound weight class, Latoya may well be tempted to a return. She is currently the Number 8 ranked featherweight in the world, according to the Women’s Pro MMA World Rankings.
9. ‘Alpha’ Cat Zingano – 9-2-0
Zingano begun her MMA career on a tear, running through her fellow competitors with TKO’s, KO’s and submissions……. Untill February 2015 when a simple mistake meant she lost to Ronda Rousey in just 14 seconds. A new start at 145 in which she needs to cut less weight is exactly what she needs in order to return to her previous dominant form. She is currently the Number 6 ranked bantamweight in the world, according to the Women’s Pro MMA World Rankings.
10. Amanda ‘The Lioness’ Nunes – 13-4-0
The UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion, Nunes is currently one of the biggest girls in UFC’s 135lbs bantamweight division, she often easily overpowers her opponents and cuts a lot of weight for fights. With the introduction of the 145lb division, she will no doubt be eyeing a potential move depending on how her fight with Ronda Rousey goes at UFC 207. She is currently the Number 1 ranked bantamweight in the world, according to the Women’s Pro MMA World Rankings.
Are you excited for the introduction of the 145lb division? Which ladies would you like to see compete against the winner of Holm VS de Randamie? Let us know in the comments section below.