The first ever all-female season of The Ultimate Fighter comes to an end this Friday, December 12 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The finals will consist of Carla Esparza vs Rose Namajunas for the first ever UFC Women’s Strawweight Championship.

The card is stacked with exciting fighters, male and female alike. In fact, this is the first UFC card in which women’s fights outnumber the men’s.

In case you’re overwhelmed by all the new faces, The MMA Corner provides you with a handy guide of what to watch for.

KJ Noons vs Daron Cruickshank

These two welterweights are heavy-hitters with backgrounds in traditional martial arts. Cruickshank is a second-degree black belt in taekwondo, while Noons was a Sanshou champion as a teenager and went 11-2 in his professional boxing career.

Noons has proven himself as a serious contender in his victories over Nick Diaz, Jorge Gurgel, and most recently – via a decisive first round knockout – Sam Stout. Cruickshank has also done well to keep his career entertaining, with victories via spinning wheel kick, a head kick KO, and a knockout by spinning backfist in his professional MMA debut back in 2009.

These men have only gotten more dangerous over the years and are guaranteed to entertain.

Angela Hill

Little have heard of before her appearance on the show as Hill was underestimated due to her lack of experience. Having had only one professional MMA fight, and at atomweight, it was an easy mistake to make.

Unfortunately, Hill was tapped out by Carla Esparza in the first round of the tournament so a lot of people are still unaware of herstriking prowess. The Evolution Muay Thai athlete went undefeated in her eleven fight amateur muay thai career, and is currently 1-0 in both her professional muay thai and MMA careers. She won many of them – including both pro debuts – by knockout.

Her grappling game, while fairly undeveloped, is beginning to come together. With enough takedown defense, she could really make some waves in the UFC women’s strawweight division.

Carla Esparza vs Rose Namajunas

Esparza began the season as a favorite due to her current standing in the world women’s strawweight rankings. Her opponent, young newcomer Namajunas, has consistently shown herself to be a force to be reckoned with in the competition.

Namajunas is fast, athletic, and entertaining. She enjoys going for flying submissions, and has even finished them in professional fights – such as in her twelve second victory over Kathina Catron back in 2013.

Esparza is a top-level wrestler, but when it comes to mixed martial arts, she just can’t compete with Namajunas. Namajunas is part of the new generation of fighters, and in my opinion, is the best women’s strawweight in the world.

You don’t want to miss this fight. Watch the card live at 9pm ET on Sportsnet 360.

About The Author

Quincy Mutter
Staff Writer

Quincy Mutter is a combat sports junkie and amateur mixed martial artist out of Niagara, Ontario. She fell in love with MMA while watching Demian Maia fight when she was 12 years old, and began training at 15. In addition to writing for The MMA Corner, Quincy is an administrator for the MMA Daily Facebook page and runs several of her own blogs.