Michelle Waterson Returns At UFC Portland, Meets Carla Esparza
By Ross Markey
Michelle Waterson will meet Carla Esparza at UFC Fight Night Portland.
A strawweight pairing of former Invicta FC atomweight champion, Michelle ‘The Karate Hottie’ Waterson, and the inaugural UFC strawweight champion, Carla ‘Cookie Monster’ Esparza has been booked for UFC Fight Night Portland on April 11th. News of the 115-pound matchup was initially reported by TSN’s, Aaron Bronsteter.
Longtime Jackson-Wink MMA trainee, Waterson, suffered a convincing unanimous decision loss to former strawweight best, Joanna Jędrzejczyk – in what subsequently proved to be a title-eliminator at 115-pounds. Before the defeat to the Polish Muay Thai practitioner – Waterson, 34, managed an impressive three-fight win streak.
The karate style striker picked up three straight decision wins over former title challenger, Karolina Kowalkiewicz, Felice Herrig, and in a close split decision triumph, overcame Courtney Casey.
California native, Esparza, recently embarked on an eye-catching win streak of her own. The 32-year-old scored a dominant win over Virna Jandiroba, before nabbing a contentious split decision win over now flyweight prospect, Alexa Grasso in Mexico City.
In a career-highlight victory, Esparza became the UFC’s first strawweight champion, as she submitted future division best, ‘Thug’ Rose Namajunas. Along with creating UFC history – Esparza etched her name in the Invicta FC history book as she landed the promotion’s inaugural strawweight title.