By Benjamin Bieker
Bellator Closes Women’s Division
While Bellator had one victory today in their resigning of Eddie Alvarez, they also had a big loss when they announced their closing of their women’s divisions. Jessica Eye and Jessica Aguilar were promptly released from the promotion. Bjorn Rebney pointed to Invicta FC as currently possessing most of the top fighters, and that made it hard to come up with compelling fights for both of the Jessicas. For Eye, two of her last three fights came outside of Bellator, and Aguilar has only been able to fight once in the last year. This closing of the promotion is the best thing that could happen for the two since they are the top fighters in their respective divisions. Now, they will have a chance to prove it in Bellator.
Felice Herrig was one of the last female fighters in Bellator, but now she is officially signed with Bellator. She is ranked sixth at strawweight, and she has a great striking game. Currently, she sits at 5-1 in her last six fights with her only loss coming to current Invicta FC champion Carla Esparza. That is a fight that Herrig will certainly want to retry, but she will have to work for it. Eye and Aguilar are another two fighters that will hopefully be picked up by Invicta FC since they are out of a home to fight after Bellator shuttered its women’s divisions.
The female fighters of the UFC learned today that they are not immune to being cut if they cannot perform. Sheila Gaff was a fighter with a lot of potential, but after being finished twice in the Octagon she is left without a home. The UFC cut the 23 year old after she was defeated by top rank fighters in Sara McMann and Amanda Nunes. With there only being a limited amount of fighter they cannot cut too many, but with the new TUF premiering soon the UFC will be flush with nearly 16 women trying to get in the house and eight at least doing so.
Milana Dudieva is looking to rebound after losing out on entering the UFC. She took on recent UFC signee Jessica Andrade who was beat by Liz Carmouche. Dudieva was riding an eight fight win streak with only one decision in the bunch. She will be fighting in her home country of Russia against unbeaten Pannie Kianzad who has finished two of her three opponents by TKO. It remains to be seen if she will recapture her momentum, but if she does than she may find her way into the Octagon.
What are your thoughts?