Former champion Carla Esparza cemented her bid for a UFC women’s strawweight title shot earlier tonight (Sat., May 22, 2021) at UFC Vegas 27 live on ESPN+ from inside UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada, when she stopped red-hot contender Yan Xiaonan via second-round TKO (punches).
Esparza wasted little time shooting in for a takedown and methodically working her way into side control. “Cookie Monster” started to land some nasty elbows and punches towards the end of the first that really bloodied Xiaonan. In Round 2, Esparza went back to the well, scored another easy takedown, and bashed her way to a bloody TKO finish.
Check out the video highlights above courtesy of UFC/ESPN.
This is Esparza’s fifth-straight win in the 115-pound division and a finish that will put her in position to challenge current champion Rose Namajunas later this year. Esparza choked out “Thug” back in 2014 to win The Ultimate Fighter Season 20 and the inaugural UFC women’s strawweight title so it will be interesting to see what the rematch looks like.
For complete UFC Vegas 27 results and coverage click here.