For the second time in her UFC career, female strawweight prospect Marina Rodriguez fought her opponent to a majority draw after three rounds. The first time came in her Octagon debut against Randa Markos. And now another grappler, Cynthia Calvillo, has caused trouble on the scorecards for the Brazilian striker.
After two strong rounds, in which Rodriguez managed to out-strike Calvillo while largely keeping the fight standing, Calvillo planted her on her back—following a failed hip toss that allowed the American to keep top control for almost three entire minutes. All the while, Calvillo was punishing the Brazilian with submission attempts and ground and pound, leading to a 10-8 score and the majority draw decision.
However, in Marina’s eyes, she not only did enough to soundly win the first two rounds, but begs to differ with the judges view of Calvillo’s dominance in the third.
“I won the first two rounds, I hit her a lot, she was getting hurt by my strikes.” Marina told Ag Fight. “She took me down, but I was not getting hurt. She had a lot of volume, but little effectiveness. She wasn’t close to finishing me. I didn’t feel like I was in danger. I could not get out from under her because I really felt her weight, it was like one weight class heavier. But I did win the first two. We have those new rules now, though, so there’s this possibility of a 10-8 round and it’s what happened.”
Although Calvillo missed weight by 4.5 pounds at the weigh-ins, which led her to forfeit 30% of her purse to Rodriguez, Marina says there was never no chance of turning down the fight. Instead, she used her opponent’s weight as motivation.
“We took the fight because after my win over Tecia Torres in August, we knew that there would be an opportunity to fight in December. We couldn’t waste that opportunity. We trained so hard, it’s tough to turn down a fight on weigh-in day. We trained, we had expenses, you have whole crew behind you, working with you, just for you to turn the fight down? It’s tricky. She missed weight, so that motivated us even more and go to war, and that’s what happened. She was one weight class heavier, but I dominated her on the feet. I think it was a good fight, I believe I won.”
Still undefeated, Marina Rodriguez (12-0-2) scored a couple of unanimous decision wins before the Calvillo fight, defeating both Tecia Torres and Jessica Aguilar earlier this year. The 32-year-old got into the UFC after scoring a TKO win over Maria Neta at Contender Series Brazil 2, in April 2018.