It's been a rough few years competitively for Roxanne Modafferi.
She was riding high a few years ago after a close win against 125-pound stalwart Tara LaRosa at the gloriously insane one-off promotion Moosin: "God of Martial Arts." It was a great fight that snapped LaRosa's 15-fight win streak and bumped Modafferi to a 15-5 record.
That win earned her a shot at a bigger stage and Sarah Kaufman.
She made the highlight reel, but not in the way she would have liked, getting slammed in one of the most memorable slam KO's in the history of the sport (up there with Quinton Jackson, Matt Hughes and Gerald Harris). That fight kicked off a five-fight losing skid, and she's been struggling to re-invent herself at 125 pounds to little success.
However, as numerous fighters of all skill levels have found out, there's nothing like the touch of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) to help one's career along.
Fighters from every walk have gotten notoriety bumps from the popular reality show, and while it might not really make one a star like Forrest Griffin or Rashad Evans, it might just help someone get some fights and money they might not get otherwise (Junie Browning, Darrill Schoonover, Jamie Yager, etc).
I'll just leave this part to her own words:
Someone on Twitter messaged me, "Are you trying out for The Ultimate Fighter TV series?" That's where 16 fighter guys live together for two months, train, and fight each other tournament style, and the winner gets a UFC contract.
Then TaraLarosa posted something about Joe Rogan's reactions to having women on the show. I was like, "Oh, let's watch the video...WAIT, WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT??????"
FREAKED OUT. Ronda Rousey and the winner of Miesha vs Cat will be coaches (HOLY SH*T) and AND AND they will have the 135 lb weight division on TUF!!!
So I've decided to go to Las Vegas for try outs. I have serious doubts, though. Can my body physically handle this? I'm injured all the time. I'm not physically strong. I'm going up a weight class, because some HUGE girls cut down to 135.
If you read her blog post, you'll see that she claims she was getting roughed up by the much stronger Rin Nakai in training out in Japan where she's been living these past few years. There's also some interesting personal observations about Rin's control-freak husband (which perhaps explains the cheesecake pictures she often shoots) if you like the gossipy side of things.
In short, while she's on a downswing in her career, she'd be a name with a bunch of legitimate fights (and wins) against some of the most widely-recognized names in the sport (Marloes Coenen, LaRosa, Kaufman, Rosi Sexton, Shayna Baszler). Time will tell if she even gets in, and if she does, whether she's the sleeper Roy Nelson of the bunch or the vet that some young up-and-comer makes a name on.