When the UFC created their strawweight division they recruited almost all of the talent they could find from Invicta. What was left were the women that couldn’t make the cut at the UFC.

Back in September of 2014 Invicta decided to quickly move forward in having the belt assigned to a new champion. Katja Kankaanpaa fought Stephanie Eggink and secured a submission in the fifth round. Now the Invicta FC Strawweight Champion, she is scheduled to make her first title defense.

Kankaanpaa’s first challenger as champion will be Livia Souza. Souza has only been fighting since 2013, but has put together an undefeated professional record of seven wins and no losses. The fact of the matter is that she has fought a lot of women you most likely have never heard of in organizations that are equally obscure. Five of her victories of come by first round stoppage which may tell us something about Souza.

Kankaanpaa isn’t undefeated, but with a record of ten wins, one loss, and one draw she has more experience, and has fought and defeated better fighters. Her lone loss was to now UFC fighter, Joanne Calderwood. This will be her fourth fight in Invicta, which is more or less the premier organization for women.  It’s also important to note that she defeated Aislin Daly. That’s a big win, and Kankaanpaa did it in her one and only fight with the Cage Warriors.

Likely Kankaanpaa will walk back to the locker room on Saturday night as the champion, but Souza does present some problems. The largest is the unknown. While she is obviously a finisher she hasn’t faced the same level of competition and she has never been in a championship bout. It has happened before where undefeated fighters have a resume full of unknown fighters and they get smashed when they make the leap, but it’s also gone the other way. We won’t know what were getting until the ref says fight.

About The Author

Michael Davis
Director, Business Development/Senior Staff Writer

Michael Davis is a seasoned professional in the world of finance. In recent years, he has worked for Fortune 500 companies and consulted at one of the largest hedge funds in the world. After working closely with a mixed martial arts management company, he realized he could apply his skills to the sport he loved. The culmination of his professional experience and passion for MMA have led him to his role as Senior Staff Writer and Director of Business Development at The MMA Corner.