A lot of people have accused the UFC of protecting Paige Van Zant from fighting some of the best in the UFC’s Strawweight division. Well, all of that may have been true since all she ever faced were a bunch of blue belts in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu who may have more experience then her, but they really had some big holes in their game and definitely could not match her intensity. Nothing against Joanne Calderwood, but she fell into the category as well. Unfortunately for Calderwood, but lucky for the fans, she was injured. That now leaves PVZ’s first main event slot opponent for a new opponent. That new opponent will be none other than former title challenger Rose Namajuanas who could be seen as the first young start the UFC tried to promote at the 115 weight class.
Rose an through the rest of the women on TUF on her way to the finale. All three of her bouts ended by submission on the show, but she fell to eventually winner and former champion Carla Esparza int he finale after she could not seal the deal with a submission and her cardio failed her. She took nearly eight months off but not by choice. She was supposed to return in May but her opponent missed weight by 4 pounds and was removed from the card due to illness. Then she did not have another opponent lined up until October where she took out former TUF cast mate Angela Hill by submission in the first round.
Now, she has jumped at the chance to take a fight on five weeks notice that with a win will catapult her into the contender-ship for the belt all over again. Paige is one of the only fighters younger than Rose by two years at just 21 years of age, but her three straight wins, two by submission, in the Octagon have made her a very appealing fighter to watch. Rose will be able to out grapple her not he ground, but all fight start standing so it will be interesting to see how this fight plays out. Either fighter with a win could potentially be the next in line for a title shot and at the most one fight away. None the less, all eyes will be on a card now that most fans had written off as unnecessary considering the weekend already had two big fight cards.