Pro MMA Now women’s bantamweight rankings – July 2016

UFC 200 was a landmark event, it saw many upsets and one of them was Amanda Nunes winning the UFC Bantamweight championship. Though PROMMA NOW predicted the fight in favor of the Brazilian lioness, most of the people considered her out of the fight. Apart from that Julianna Pena fought against the odds as she out-wrestled former title challenger Cat “Alpha” Zingano.

These events have led to humongous changes in the bantamweight division. So here are the PROMMA NOW bantamweight rankings for the month of July.

amanda nunes

1. Amanda Nunes (13-4)

The Brazilian stunned the world when she destroyed Miesha Tate in the very first round by making her tap to a vicious rear naked choke, not before thrashing her for good measures. Amanda has now extended her win streak to 4, which includes victories over Sara McMann and Miesha Tate. Amanda has successfully managed to get into record books as her winning the main event of the biggest event in the history of MMA is definitely a big deal. Hence Amanda has rightfully earned the rank of the best female bantamweight MMA fighter on the planet.

miesha tate

2. Miesha Tate (18-6)

“Cupcake” entered the octagon as a favorite for her first title defense on UFC 200, but could not withstand the onslaught by Amanda. Miesha kissed goodbye to her five fight win streak on July 9 as she tapped out to a Rear Naked Choke in the very first round. Miesha won the bantamweight championship in March by upsetting Holly Holm. She still holds victories over Sara McMann and Holly but it looks like she will have to work from the very bottom to get back ahold of the belt.

holly holm_qna

3. Holly Holm (10-1)

After stunning the world by knocking out Ronda Rousey at UFC 193, Holly Holm looked like she was ready to become the new star of women’s MMA. However, “The Preacher’s Daughter” would lose the belt to Miesha Tate by being choked out at UFC 196. The hard fought battle was turned around when Holly made a mistake and was caught in a vicious hold by “Cupcake” in the final round. Holly is now set to clash against world champion kickboxer Valentina Shevchenko on July 23, 2016, in the main event of the night. We can also hopefully look forward to a rematch with the former champ Ronda Rousey at some point, as well as a catchweight fight against Cris Cyborg down the road. It looks like Holly has a tough year ahead and if she survives it she can go on to become an all-time great.

rousey ronda smile

4. Ronda Rousey (12-1)

Ronda Rousey suffered her career’s first defeat at the hands of multiple time boxing champion Holly Holm. She had a great 2015 with both of her matches coming to an end in the very first minute of the fight. She even won the ESPY award for best female athlete. But her aura of invincibility was destroyed by “The Preacher’s Daughter” at UFC 196 where she was savagely knocked out by a head kick in round 2. Ronda is expected to face the champion of the women’s bantamweight division in an immediate shot at the title upon her return. When that will be, we do not know at this point.

julianna pena

5. Julianna Pena (8-2)

Julianna Pena has gone on to become a sensation. Since winning The Ultimate Fighter Season 18, “The Venezuelan Vixen” has been unstoppable. She had an amazing 2015 with a knockout victory over Milana Dudieva and had an amazing win when she defeated Jessica Eye at UFC 192. She faced her career’s biggest challenge when she faced Cat Zingano at UFC 200 and was the underdog, but she proved doubters wrong as she outwrestled Cat for two rounds after facing a tough first round. Julianna now holds a UFC record of 4-0. She is very close to a title shot now and with her performances so far she will definitely receive one.

tonya evinger

6. Tonya Evinger (18-5)

After completing 10 years in her MMA career Tonya Evinger has finally found her well-earned glory. The Invicta FC bantamweight champ is currently on a nine-fight winning streak and is the only non-UFC fighter on our list. Evinger recently locked horns against fellow veteran Colleen Schneider and won by a unanimous decision. Her last defeat came way back in 2011. Let’s see what awaits “Triple Threat”.

cat zingano small

7. Cat Zingano (9-2)

“Alpha” ended up on the wrong side of the judges’ decision at UFC 200. After producing a dominating round 1 of her fight against Julianna, Cat lost rounds 2 and 3. Zingano is now 2-2 in UFC and for the first time in her career is on a losing streak. Despite these facts she currently holds victories over the current champion Amanda Nunes as well as former champion Miesha Tate hence adding much to her credit and is more than enough to put her in the top 10.

sara mcmann

8. Sara McMann (9-3)

Sara McMann bounced back from her two loses as she defeated Jessica Eye in her May fight. The Olympic silver medal winner had been on a losing streak which included losses from the hands of Miesha Tate and Amanda Nunes. But losing to the champion is not really that bad a thing. Sara has been lately angling a fight with a top contender and is wanting a title shot soon, but she has to put a couple more wins together at least before she gets back in the title picture.

valentina shevchenko

9. Valentina Shevchenko (12-2)

The kickboxing world champ made a super octagon debut when she defeated Sarah Kaufman on a short notice. But her march to the tile shot came to an end when she ran into the Brazilian “Lioness” Amanda Nunes. She lost the fight via unanimous decision. She has however shown a display of badass kickboxing and has a decent ground game. Now “Bullet” is getting ready for her career’s biggest match as she locks horns with the decorated boxer and former champion Holly Holm. Both strikers suffered their first octagon losses at the same event UFC 196. Now Valentina has a golden opportunity to get her name in the title picture if she manages to stop Holly.

raquel pennington

10. Raquel Pennington (7-5)

Raquel has been one of the most dominating forces in the women’s bantamweight division. She is the only fighter, who could face Holly while keeping the game on feet. She has won her last two fights, lastly defeating former title challenger Bethe Correia. Her ground game too has improved as she showed a display of super grappling when she made Jessica Andrade tap out in the second round of their fight. She is now taking a break before she returns for her next bout.

-Paarth Pande
(@PandePaarth)

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