Photo by Ross Dettman via ESPN
A couple of lethal ladies went to war tonight (July 30) in the co-main event of Strikeforce: "Fedor vs. Henderson," broadcasted live on Showtime.
They needed to deliver and do it big.
It may have been a bit of a bad sign when the referee, "Big" John McCarthy received a much louder ovation upon his announcement but fans were immediately drawn back in when Coenen nastily bumped fists with a smiling Tate.
It was better than it sounds.
That may be doing it a slight disservice, but the victory for Tate seems like a loss for women's MMA on the whole. Sad, but most likely true.
Once they got underway, Tate went straight for the "takedown" and failed miserably, at least at first. Once she did get Coenen down, she was locked in a choke and nearly tapping away her title aspirations.
She's nothing if not a survivor, though, and worked her way out to dominant position, although she could never quite capitalize on it.
Round two saw a quick clinch that turned into an entire round of Coenen threatening while riding Tate's back. Miesha stayed strong and her resilience pushed her through to the third frame.
Again, shortly into the third, Tate went to her bread and butter, the "takedown" and controlled from top as long as the referee would let her. Which turned out to be the majority of the frame. Once McCarthy called for a reset, Tate simply executed yet another takedown.
The championship rounds are where ... well ... champions are made. And once the fight made it that far, it looked more and more like Tate's relentless pressure would win out.
Sure enough, she managed to lock on an arm triangle submission and forced the tap to win the women's bantamweight title.
Impressive performance in terms of end result but how far will it go with the powers that be?