FanPost

InvictaFC 6 Post Fight Thoughts

InvictaFC 6 delivered on the action, but the card did more for the promotion than just having awesome fights.

The main event firmly re-established Cris Cyborg. She is the biggest star in the InvictaFC promotion right now, and she needed a dominant win over a solid opponent in Marloes Coenen. There are still those who look down upon her for her failed drug test not too long ago, but the more that she wins, the more interest there will be for a showdown with Ronda Rousey. Even in the comment section, after this performance, a good amount of fans were saying that Cyborg would beat Rousey. I was also pleased to hear that she wants to grow with InvictaFC at the post fight interview, as that attitude will, in my opinion, help rebuild her reputation.

The card also established two Title contenders (and most likely a third in Jessica Penne) at Women's Strawweight and Women's Flyweight. Claudia Gadelha was extremely impressive against Ayaka Hamasaki, and that performance really put her on notice and made her come across as a very real and legit challenge to Carla Esparza. Personally, I think that Gadelha beats Esparza.

Leslie Smith also became number one contender to Barb Honchak's Women's Flyweight Title beating Jennifer Maia. Leslie Smith is pretty much synonymous with InvictaFC, and while Cyborg is their biggest star, Leslie Smith is something of the "face" of the promotion. She became known to many MMA fans from her fights against Kaitlin Young in InvictaFC, and has fought on every InvictaFC card except for InvictaFC 2. When she is scheduled to fight, MMA fans that know of her get excited. She could hang in the UFC at 135 lbs, and while she may find herself there in the near future, InvictaFC's lucky to have her now. To be honest, I think that she's a star in the making as she does have looks, charisma, and is always in exciting fights. No offense to Honchak, but I think it'd be better for InvictaFC from a business standpoint if Smith becomes the Flyweight Champion.

Besides establishing the next Title contenders, this card also established future Title contenders and prospects. Mizuki Inoue, who is only 18-years-old, quickly opened up some eyes as she outboxed Bec Hyatt, and just showed amazing potential for the future. Tecia Torres and Rose Namajunas will probably fight each other in the future, and probably for a Title. Miriam Nakamoto is someone to watch out for, especially with her deadly knees. I just wonder what affect, if any, does her age have in terms of her longevity in Women's MMA.

The skill level was extremely impressive from all the athletes. I am of the opinion that in general, striking is where more female fighters need the most work. However, in this card, there was noticeable improvements in striking from Sarah D'Alelio and Cris Cyborg. Miriam Nakamoto could knock out people twice her size with her knees. Tecia Torres and Rose Namajunas showed a variety of strikes and looked polished in their striking despite them only having two pro MMA fights up until they fought. Mizuki Inoue's standup was also very impressive as well, and Bec Hyatt's striking didn't look that bad either. Leslie Smith still brawls and isn't the cleanest striker, but it looks like she's getting comfortable with her distancing and range, and even in her fight, she still came across to me as improved in her striking, especially her head kicks. While I think that in general that most female fighters still need work in striking, this card emphasized big strides in improvement in that area.

Julie Kedzie kept mentioning it on the broadcast, and I echo her sentiments, but when is Joanne Calderwood getting a Title shot? She is arguably the best striker of her division, and she has a cult fan following as well. Against Norma Rueda Center, she showed good takedown defense, and a good ability to get back to her feet when taken down. Surprisingly, she always seems to play second fiddle at Women's Strawweight for some reason. For example, it was Gadelha who got bumped up to co-main against Hamasaki when Esparza had to pull out due to an injury, despite Calderwood being more known and more proven up to that point.

I had Sarah D'Alelio beating Lauren Taylor, and I found that 30-27 in favor of Taylor to be ridiculous. This win didn't exactly establish her as a prospect to watch out for (to most), and it may have done more harm than good. Sarah D'Alelio is a solid and improving fighter, and a win over her is nothing to scoff at, but it seems like the story of the fight isn't about Taylor getting a big victory over a tough opponent, but of how she shouldn't have won and that the judges messed up. Ironically, Norma Rueda Center's loss to Joanne Calderwood did more good than harm in that she showed toughness throughout the fight, and she may be someone to keep an eye out for.

The one gripe that I had with this card is that there were no post fight interviews. The pacing for the card was great as far as delivering constant action, but I felt that those interviews would allow some breathing room between fights, but also allow viewers to digest the individual fights after they happened. It just went on to the next fight, and while that's good for non-stop entertainment, I feel that they would be able to better establish the fighters with the post fight interviews. Also, with having number one contender fights, a post fight interview could help in building upcoming Title fights, and possibly even have faceoffs as well. Dave Meltzer more or less echoed my sentiments on this subject on MMAfighting.com at: http://www.mmafighting.com/2013/7/14/4523118/invicta-can-improve-with-a-few-tweaks-but-ultimately-the-fighters

Overall, InvictaFC 6 was awesome, and it did a lot to establish the brand and the fighters. So far, in my opinion, there have been no bad InvictaFC cards, and I always particularly look forward to watching their cards more than even some UFC PPVs. I wish them all the best, and I hope that they get a good tv deal in the near future, and possibly have more cards per year.

\The FanPosts are solely the subjective opinions of Bloody Elbow readers and do not necessarily reflect the views of Bloody Elbow editors or staff.

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