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The Wiseman Report – Hamasaki prevails over Brown at Invicta FC 16

There were a lot of good things at the Invicta FC 16 show last Friday night in Las Vegas.

We saw the toughness, technique and resourcefulness of atomweight champion Ayaka Hamasaki as she survived several triangles by challenger Amber Brown to slap on an armbar submission and defend her belt.

Brown used her strength advantage and showed some technique of her own, but it wasn’t enough to put away the champion.

The fight-of-the-night had to be Jennifer Maia putting on a comeback for the ages after almost getting finished in the first two minutes of the bout against Vanessa Porto.  Porto locked up the first two rounds, but then tired after her nose was bloodied. Maia won the final three gruelling rounds to become the interim flyweight champion.

Invicta FC 16
Courtesy Esther Lin/Invicta FC.

There were many outstanding individual performances, including  Irene Aldana, Angela Hill, Jinh Yu Frey, Aspen Ladd, Sarah D’Alelio and her opponent Andrea Lee.

It was a great show, and the production was improved since Invicta FC 15, except when they notably showed the wrong Frey highlights in her post-fight interview.

Give your staff some props, Shannon.

Now, we look forward to Sunday’s UFC Fight Night 85 (which by the way is one day after my colleague Kenai Andrews birthday, shout him out on Twitter!), which has a pair of bantamweight fights.

Starting off the early prelims, The Pacemaker Leslie Smith (7-6-1) takes on Japan’s Rin Nakai (16-1-1).

Nakai suffered her first loss in her UFC debut to now champion Miesha Tate, but was competitive. Similarly, she will be giving up size and reach advantages to Smith. She will likely want to use her grappling to take the starch out of Smith, who is also trying to rebound from a loss to Jessica Eye.

Rin Nakai
Rin Nakai and Miesha Tate exchange punches in their bantamweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event inside the Saitama Arena on September 20, 2014 in Saitama, Japan. (Photo by Mitch Viquez/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Starting off the main card, “Rowdy” Bec Rawlings (6-4-0) returns to the octagon to face South Korea’s Seo Hee Ham (16-6-0).

Those keeping score remember’s Rawling’s domestic situation from 2014. She seems to be in a better place since then, with a win over Lisa Ellis last May.

I remember Ham’s surprisingly competitive performance against Joanne Calderwood in her UFC debut. She also earned Fight-of-the-Night honours in her next fight, a decision win over Courtney Casey.

This will be a competitive bout as well.

Some of these fighters haven’t fought in awhile, so it’s good to see them back in action.

In other news, Maryna Moroz and Cristina Stanciu have been added to Zagreb’s UFC Fight Night 86.

Paige VanZant is going to appear on Dancing with the Stars? Cool! Should bring in some new fans to her base and the sport too.

But to be honest, this Esther Lin photograph is the only thing in my brain as I write this column.

Invicta FC 16.

See you next week!


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