Invicta Fighting Championships will return to "The Sunflower State" this Friday night (July 13, 2013) at Ameristar Casino in Kansas City, Kansas.
The preliminary card will be streamed live on InvictaFC.com on fight night, beginning at 7 p.m. ET with the main card beginning at 8 p.m. ET. This will be Invicta's second (official) pay-per-view (PPV) event. Canadian fans will also be able to view the preliminary card action on The Fight Network.
Headlining the main event will be a thrilling featherweight rematch pitting former Strikeforce women's featherweight champion Cris Cyborg against former Strikeforce womens' bantamweight champion Marloes Coenen. Cyborg won the first meeting, but the third round TKO was the longest fight she's had in the last seven years. Coenen enters the bout riding a two fight winning streak including a victory headlining the inaugural Invicta event last April.
Also on tap will be a number one strawweight contender fight between unbeaten grapplers Claudia Gedalho of Brazil (9-0) and Japan's Ayaka Hamasaki (9-0). The winner will face Invicta FC 115 pound champion Carla Esparza, who had to withdraw from the event due to injury.
But that's not what this preview is about. Three bouts will take place before the stacked 10 fight main card and they feature several talented prospect. Check out below for our official preview and predictions for the Invicta FC 6 'prelims.'
Both of these ladies were handed their first professional losses in their most recent Invicta fights and are trying to get back on track. Cummins was hailed as one of the best upcoming prospects but found herself on the receiving end of Joanne Calderwood's unforgiving Muay Thai attack and suffered a badly broken orbital last October which left post-fight vision problems. The St. Louis police officer is healthy now and looking to return to form.
Kagan was also a decent prospect hailing from Greg Jackson's gym in Albuquerque, New Mexico and she had the opportunity to routinely test her skills against top female training partners like Invicta atomweight champion Michelle Waterson, former Strikeforce champ Sarah Kaufman and UFC bantamweight Julie Kedzie. She was on the receiving end of a Rose Namajunas rear naked choke in her Invicta debut. She definitely wants to put that one behind her.
Both of these women are going to be looking to secure dominant positions either in the clinch or on the ground with wrestling. Cummins is the more polished of the two and is much more capable in the submission game. Kagan, while aggressive, has a tendency to leave herself wide open to submissions while trying to secure a superior position. Namajunas may have been the first to finish her as a pro, but she's danced with the devil in her prior victories as well. The big question heading into this bout will be how the broken orbital and temporary vision issues will affect Cummins in her return to the cage. Some fighters aren't the same when they get a scare like that and she'll need all of her aggression and confidence if she wants to be victorious.
Final Prediction: Ashley Cummins via unanimous decision
Before you completely write off Mollie Estes for having a losing record, know that in her second pro fight, she faced Olympic medal-winning wrestler Randi Miller in her Invicta debut and more than held her own, winning the first two rounds before being finished in the third. She again stepped up as an injury replacement to face top female featherweight Julia Budd in her last fight and hung tough before being finished in the third round. Before turning pro, she went 7-1 in her official amateur bouts.
Rothenhausler is being hailed as one of the next big things in the women's featherweight division. Now training out of Team Alpha Male, "The Heartbreaker" possesses some of the most powerful punches in all of women's MMA. Her incredible five second knockout of Ashley Evans-Smith to win an amateur title has been viewed a whopping 4.3 million times on YouTube. In her pro debut this past January, she took all of 72 seconds to put Katalina Malungahu's lights out. She's hoping to add Estes to her hit list.
Expect to see Rothenhausler put in some early aggression. She believes in her hands as much as any fighter out there and she possesses that rare type of one-punch power that hardly anyone else has in women's MMA. If Rothenhausler can put those hands on Estes early, she could have another quick night. Estes will likely try to keep her distance at first, then quickly get inside and take away Rothenhausler's weapons in the clinch or with takedowns. If she's forced to stand and bang, she'll be in big, big trouble.
Final Prediction: Veronica Rothenhausler via knockout in round one
105 lbs.: Cassie Robb (0-1) vs. Livia von Plettenberg (1-1)
Robb is a very aggressive fighter training out Wyoming. After compiling 3-2-1 amateur records, she made her pro debut at Invicta FC 4 where she won the first round against Laura Sanko but faded in the second and was submitted via rear naked choke. She stepped up to fight von Plettenberg when original opponent (Sanko) bowed out. She'll be hoping to redeem herself on Saturday night.
Von Plettenberg is absolutely fearless. She accumulated a 12-6 professional kickboxing record and in her pro debut she destroyed her opponent in less than a minute with a violent series of stand-up strikes. The Austrian has a strong striking background, having previously won the 2011 K-1 European Championship. She made her Invicta debut this past January, taking on elite women's 115 pound prospect Joanne Calderwood and despite taking a horrific beating, she survived all three rounds and showcasing tremendous heart to make it to a decision. She'll be trying to right the ship this weekend as well.
Robb is known for constantly pushing forward, working for takedowns and once she gets them, taking risks, utilizing ground and pound and potentially opening up pathways to submissions. That has backfired in the past because she leaves herself open to reverses and submissions herself, but she shouldn't have too much to fear from von Plettenberg on the ground this time around. Von Plettenberg, of course, will want to keep this fight standing. Despite her kickboxing background, she primarily prefers to punch and she has a very quick first step. "T-Rex" has some pop as well and if she catches Robb with her right hand, she can definitely put her away. Von Plettenberg trains out of Team Quest in Portland, Oregon so the outcome of this fight will almost certainly be determined by whether or not she can use those skills she's learned from Matt Lindland defensively. I think she will.
Final Prediction: Livia von Plettenberg via TKO in round two
Stay tuned tomorrow for part one of my Invicta FC 6 predictions!