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UFC 237 video recap: Jessica Andrade captures strawweight title with epic KO slam

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Jessica Andrade won the UFC’s strawweight title by knocking out Rose Namajunas with a slam in the UFC 237 main event.

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Rose Namajunas vs. Jessica Andrade had a wild and unexpected momentum shift in the UFC 237 main event! The first round was all Namajunas, all the time. The defending champ was putting on a striking clinic, picking apart Andrade and even scoring a knockdown off a knee to the face. Andrade was able to lift up her opponent over her head for a slam twice in the opening round, but Namajunas was able to use a Kimura lock to avoid taking the full brunt of the impact.

Things were going well for Namajunas, until Andrade was able to grab ahold of her in the second round. Andrade again scooped up the champ for a slam, but this time was able to drive Namajunas into the canvas with so much force that it knocked her completely out. It went from Namajunas styling on Andrade, to Andrade getting an insta-win via slam. This is what makes MMA the greatest sporting event on the planet.

What was the highlight of the fight?

The highlight of the fight was definitely the slam. This was no fluke. Andrade attempted the same slam twice in the first round, and then finally hit it the way she wanted to in the second. Seeing fighters win in such a manner is rarely seen in modern day MMA. Guys like Frank Shamrock and Tito Ortiz came up on slamming their victims, but as the sport evolved and the average wrestling I.Q. increased, fewer and fewer slams seem to occur at the elite level. The rarity of a slamming knockout is special all on its own. Doing it for the belt is next-level cool.

Where do these two go from here?

Namajunas was winning this fight up until the moment she lost. The UFC awarded this bout with Fight of the Night honors, and there’s no reason why Andrade and Namajunas couldn’t run this one right back. We already know it will be exciting.

She could try and avenge her last loss to former champ Joanna Jedrzejczyk. The stylistic matchup against JJ is far from favorable. Andrade was picked apart on the feet when they first met at UFC 211 back in 2017. It’s true that Andrade is a much better fighter now then she was then, but her style of fighting is pretty much the same. The same is true for JJ.

There are some other fresh options out there for Andrade, too. She could potentially face the winner of the upcoming match between Tatiana Suarez and Nina Ansaroff. Since winning TUF 23, Suarez has won four-straight within the promotion and finished the likes of Amanda Cooper, Alexa Grasso, and Carla Esparza. Ansaroff is on a four-fight winning streak herself, so a win for either fighter could deem them worth of a shot at Andrade’s belt.

If Namajunas doesn’t get an immediate rematch, then perhaps she could run it back with the streaking Michelle Waterson. They first met at UFC on FOX 24. Namajunas dropped Waterson and then submitted her with a rear-naked choke in the second round. Waterson has won three-straight, including her most recent victory over Karolina Kowalkiewicz, who just happens to be Namajunas’ last loss before Andrade.

Just as Jedrzejczyk seems to be a bad stylistic matchup for Andrade, Namajunas appears to be the same sort of horrible matchup for Jedrzejczyk. Namajunas already holds two victories over her fellow former champ, so a third fight doesn’t really make much sense. In her post-fight interview, Namajunas stated how relieved she was that the pressure of being champion was gone. Perhaps she will take some extended time away before returning to action.

Watch now, later, or never?

Watch this now! This had a striking clinic in round one, complete with knockdown, and then a gigantic momentum shift in the second act. How often do you get to see a slamming knockout? How often does a title change hands via slam? Go watch this right this second!