“The Karate Hottie” has her next UFC fight set.
After finishing popular fan favorite Paige VanZant in shockingly easy fashion at December’s UFC on FOX 22, word arrived on tonight’s (Sat., February 11, 2017) UFC 208 broadcast that Michelle Waterson will continue her quest towards a UFC women’s strawweight title shot by facing former title challenger Rose Namajunas at April 15’s UFC on FOX 24 from Kansas City, Missouri.
The UFC later announced a featherweight match-up between former bantamweight champion Renan Barao and rising prospect Doo Ho Choi would headline the event.
Former Invicta FC atomweight champion Waterson has won her only two UFC bouts, submitting Angela Magana in her UFC debut in July 2015 before a series of injuries delayed her next fight until the end of 2016.
The fight pits the rare match-up of a winning fighter facing an opponent coming off of a loss, as Namajunas lost a pivotal title eliminator against Karolina Kowalkiewicz in her last bout at July 2016’s UFC 201. Long billed as the future of the UFC strawweight division, “Thug” has displayed stints of brilliance and inconsistency in the octagon.
Namajunas boasts wins over VanZant, Tecia Torres, and Angela Hill, but has also lost to Carla Esparza, Torres, and Kowalkiewicz. She’s still ranked at No. 5 to Waterson’s No. 7. The promotion also announced a flyweight bout between Tim Elliot and Louis Smolka, a a middleweight bout between Andrew Sanchez and Anthony Smith, and a light heavyweight bout between Devin Collier and Jake Collier.
The first-ever UFC card from Kansas City will take place from the Sprint Center, with more bouts to be revealed in the coming weeks.