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Submission! Watch Michelle Waterson put Paige VanZant to sleep at UFC on FOX 22 in Sacramento

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A new women’s strawweight contender was put on full display last night (Sat., Dec. 17, 2016) at UFC on FOX 22 live on FOX from inside Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, Calif., as Michelle Waterson walked into Paige VanZant’s own backyard and put the Dancing With the Stars standout to sleep with a first-round submission finish. It was Waterson’s ninth career finish by way of submission and her second victory in as many Octagon appearances.

Both ladies created distance early with kicks to the body. After making VanZant pay for coming inside, Waterson landed a huge takedown and took the back of “12 Gauge.” From there, “Karate Hottie” sunk in a nasty rear-naked choke attempt, but VanZant pulled her arms away to wiggle free. Waterson reconfigured her grip and ended up putting PVZ to sleep to claim the first-round submission finish.

The full video highlights can be seen above courtesy of UFC.

With this win, Waterson moves extremely close to a title shot in 2017. There are certainly some names ahead of her in the pecking order, but this victory over PVZ has to be the most impressive performance from any strawweight this year outside of current champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk. If she can stay healthy, Waterson can become one of the division’s biggest stars.

For complete UFC on FOX 22 results and coverage click here.