UFC booking potential title eliminator between Katlyn Chookagian and Jennifer Maia

The UFC has finalized a matchup for January that could prove to be a title eliminator in the women’s flyweight division. MMA.Idea was the first to report that the promotion has finalized a matchup between Katlyn Chookagian (16-4) and Jennifer Maia (19-7-1).

The matchup will take place at UFC 270 which is scheduled for January 15th. This is actually a rematch from UFC 244 in November of 2019. That night, Chookagian was able to get the best of Maia by winning a decision.

Since that defeat to Chookagian, Maia has gone 2-1 with her lone loss coming against the UFC champion, Valentina Shevchenko. Last August, Maia was presented a golden opportunity to fight Joanne Calderwood.

Calderwood was given a title shot, but due to an injury to Shevchenko, the fight was pushed back. Wanting to stay active, Calderwood asked the UFC for another fight. The promotion called Jennifer Maia and gave her the fight.

Maia was able to submit Calderwood in the first round to take away her UFC title shot. She would go on to lose to Shevchenko, but she bounced back against Jessica Eye back in July. Now, she’ll try to avenge her loss to Chookagian.

Second UFC title shot for Blonde Fighter?

Katlyn Chookagian is in a very tough spot in the flyweight division. I think most people would say that it’s clear that she’s the third best flyweight in the UFC. However, there’s a sizeable gap between her and the top two which makes her hard to push as a contender.

Since the start of 2019, Chookagian is 5-2 inside the octagon. She’s defeated Maia, Calderwood, Antonina Shevchenko, Cynthia Calvillo, and Viviane Araujo. However, sprinkled in between those wins are stoppage defeats at the hands of Valentina Shevchenko and Jessica Andrade.

Never the less, given the lack of challengers to Valentina Shevchenko’s brilliance, Chookagian is knocking on the door of another title shot. She’s won back-to-back fights since losing to Jessica Andrade on Fight Island last year.

If she’s able to defeat Jennifer Maia at UFC 270, her three consecutive wins might be enough to warrant another shot at the champion. Either way, this is a huge matchup for the landscape of 125 pounds.

With a win at UFC 263, did Lauren Murphy earn a shot at the flyweight title?

Lauren Murphy, UFC

This past Saturday on the prelims of UFC 263, we saw a pivotal matchup in the women’s flyweight division. Top six contenders went head-to-head in a potential title eliminator as Lauren Murphy (15-4) took on Joanne “JoJo” Calderwood (15-6).

The fight was extremely close on Saturday night. In the first round, both ladies were able to do some solid work on the feet. It was an extremely tough round to score and I could have seen an argument for either fighter getting the nod in the first round.

The second round was all Lauren Murphy. Murphy was able to secure a takedown early and she controlled the entire round from the top position. In the third round, Murphy was not able to get Calderwood back to the ground.

Both of the fighters slugged it out in the third round at UFC 263, but Calderwood clearly got the better of the striking exchanges. With that, the two went to the scorecards. It was clear who won the second and third round, but the first was very much up in the air.

I could have easily seen three outcomes based on those three rounds. All three of these were arguable at UFC 263: Murphy by decision, draw, Calderwood by decision. It all would come down to how the second round was scored and who won the first round.

In the end, two of the three judges gave the fight to “Lucky” Lauren Murphy. A massive win for her as she made it five in a row in the UFC.

What’s next after UFC 263?

As mentioned, Lauren Murphy has put together five consecutive wins in the flyweight division. The only one above her in terms of consecutive wins is the current flyweight queen, Valentina Shevchenko (21-3).

Murphy was vocal after her last win at UFC 254 in October that she wanted a shot at the title. Of course, Jessica Andrade ended up getting the shot and was thoroughly dominated by the champion at UFC 261.

Having won her fifth in a row, is Lauren Murphy next? Well, I have to say that I would personally give her the shot. She’s won five in a row and she’s the only one in the top four who hasn’t had a crack at Shevchenko yet.

Dana White didn’t commit to giving her the next UFC title shot, but he acknowledge that it’s a real possibility. Really, there’s only one other top contender who has an argument and that’s Katlyn Chookagian (16-4).

Chookagian holds a victory over Lauren Murphy and she’s currently ranked second in the division ahead of Murphy. However, Chookagian did get a shot against Shevchenko last year and was dominated by the champion.

I don’t want to see Murphy fight Chookagian again and I personally don’t want to see Chookagian fight Shevchenko again right now. I think it’s time that Lauren Murphy gets her UFC title shot. It’s a new fight for the division and Murphy has earned it with five consecutive wins in the flyweight division.

After another solid win at UFC 262, what’s next for Katlyn Chookagian?

This past Saturday at UFC 262, we saw a pivotal matchup in the women’s flyweight division. Top contender Katlyn Chookagian (16-4) was taking on the surging Brazilian Viviane Araujo (10-3).

Araujo entered UFC 262 on a two-fight win streak and had a lot of people buzzing about her. Chookagian was unphased by a lot of the Araujo hype and she was ready to go out and pick up another good win.

Chookagian fought at UFC 255 when she took on former strawweight Cynthia Calvillo. Calvillo was being built up as a potential title challenger at flyweight, but Chookagian completely shut her down in November.

Araujo started the fight out really strong at UFC 262. Her power was on display in the first round and in the second round she was able to mount Chookagian. The first half of the fight was not going according to plan for Chookagian.

However, Chookagian battled through and weathered the storm. Upon getting back to her feet late in the second round, Chookagian had an exhausted Viviane Araujo standing in front of her.

From that moment, the fight was all Katlyn Chookagian at UFC 262. After the third round, it was clear that Chookagian had made the fight extremely close. To me surprise, all three judges gave her the fight and one judge even gave her every round.

What’s next after UFC 262?

Saturday night was another night where Chookagian proved she’s one of the best flyweights in the UFC. That said, she’s in a bit of a tough spot. Since 2019, Chookagian is 5-2 in the flyweight division.

However, those two losses were to Valentina Shevchenko and Jessica Andrade. Neither fight was close and Chookagian was finished in both of those fights. She’s in a weird limbo stage because I don’t think she beats either of those two in a rematch.

With that, she’s going to have to beat up on the other contenders if she wants another shot at the UFC title. I think the winner of the Lauren Murphy – JoJo Calderwood fight is likely going to get the next title shot.

Neither one of those ladies are an option, but there is a matchup at UFC 264 that could present a fight for Chookagian. Former title challenger Jessica Eye (15-9, 1 NC) and Jennifer Maia (18-7-1) are fighting each other in July.

Chookagian has fought both before having lost to Eye and defeating Jennifer Maia. I think a rematch with either of those ladies is warranted at this stage. A rematch with whoever wins could very well be the direction the UFC chooses to go in after Saturday night.

After coming up short at UFC 262, what’s next for Viviane Araujo?

This past Saturday on the main card of UFC 262, we saw a pivotal matchup in the flyweight division. Consensus top contender Katlyn Chookagian (16-4) was taking on the surging Viviane Araujo (10-3).

Araujo made the walk at UFC 262 riding a two-fight win streak. In her last win, she defeated the tough Roxanne Modafferi by decision. That was a big win that got her going in the right direction.

However, fighting Katlyn Chookagian was a big step up. Chookagian is considered by everyone to be the third best flyweight in the world. In my opinion, she’s going to end up turning into the UFC‘s gate keeper of that weight class.

This fight was going to tell us a lot about where Viviane Araujo is. Well, in my opinion, she looked great for the first couple of rounds. The first round was competitive between the two flyweights, but I thought Araujo landed the bigger shots.

In the second round, Araujo got the fight to the ground and had Chookagian mounted. She was attacking submissions, but the UFC‘s second ranked flyweight contender wouldn’t go away easy and fought her way out.

After Araujo couldn’t finish the fight on the ground, she was gassed. From there, Chookagian cruised the rest of the fight. However, I personally scored the first two for Araujo. To me surprise, not a single judge gave her the fight and one judge gave all three rounds to Chookagian at UFC 262.

What’s next after UFC 262?

Despite it being a unanimous decision loss at UFC 262, I really don’t think Araujo loses a lot here. I think there are a lot of people who can watch that fight back and think it was either razor close or Araujo won.

It was not a robbery and it was a close fight. However, there’s no way that Viviane Araujo lost all three rounds of that fight. So, with that loss, what does the UFC do with Araujo next?

Well, I think there’s an opponent that’s actually lined up perfectly for her. Araujo is ranked eighth at flyweight and I think she should be paired up with tenth ranked Alexa Grasso (13-3) next.

Grasso has looked great since moving up to flyweight. She had an incredible performance at UFC 258 against Maycee Barber and I think pairing these two up would be the wise move for the promotion.

Katlyn Chookagian edges Viviane Araujo at UFC 262

On the main card of UFC 262, we saw a pivotal matchup in the women’s flyweight division. Top contender and former title challenger Katlyn Chookagian (15-4) was taking on the surging contender Viviane Araujo (10-2).

Araujo entered UFC 262 riding a two-fight win streak. In her last performance, Araujo defeated the very tough Roxanne Modafferi by decision back in January. The two straight wins are on the heels of her loss to another former title challenger in Jessica Eye.

Araujo was looking to use this fight against Katlyn Chookagian as a stepping stone straight into title contention. However, getting the win over someone as tough as Chookagian was not going to be easy.

In my opinion heading into UFC 262, Katlyn Chookagian was clearly the third best flyweight in the world. She’s gone 8-4 inside the octagon and she’s only lost to former champions and former title challengers.

Since 2019, Chookagian has gone 4-2 with wins over JoJo Calderwood, Jennifer Maia, and Cynthia Calvillo. The Calvillo win came back at UFC 255 which was a nice bounce back win after she was stopped in the first round by Jessica Andrade.

UFC 262 Recap

Round 1

The UFC 262 flyweight contest kicked off with immediate pressure from Araujo. Both ladies trade jabs to start their striking. Nice step-in jab lands for Chookagian. Chookagian lands a nice lead left hook.

Big body shot and hook lands for Araujo. Chookagian lands a jab, but Araujo lands a nice left hook on the exit. Big overhand right hand lands for Araujo. Front kick for Chookagian finds it’s home. Another nice right hand lands for Araujo.

Araujo misses wild and a nice body counter lands for Chookagian. Chookagian steps forward with a combination and Araujo counters with a beautiful body shot. The activity is really picking up for Katlyn Chookagian.

1-2 to the body lands for Araujo. Chookagian being very active with her jab and it’s starting to land. A jab and back-to-back front kicks to the body lands for Chookagian. Araujo shoots for a takedown and presses Chookagian against the fence. Round comes to a close and it’s 1-0 Araujo at UFC 262.

Round 2

Chookagian steps forward with a nice 1-2 to start the second here at UFC 262. Both ladies exchange big jabs. A front kick from Chookagian sets Araujo down briefly, but Araujo is right back up.

Araujo presses forward with power shots but misses wildly. Tons of volume here in the second for Katlyn Chookagian. Chookagian is landing the jab consistently here in the second round.

Chookagian throws a body kick, but Araujo catches it. Araujo uses the leg to land a takedown and she’s immediately in halfguard. Araujo starts to work on a guillotine and she uses it to get the mount.

Chookagian is holding on tight, but she’s in a very bad spot here. Araujo starts to attack an arm-triangle, but Chookagian explodes up and starts throwing bombs. Huge 1-2 lands for Chookagian and Araujo looks exhausted here.

Chookagian is pouring it on here late in the round. Araujo plots forward and lands a jab, but she looks compromised. Nice body kick lands and the round comes to a close. Despite the strong close, I think Araujo takes it. Araujo is up 2-0 here at UFC 262.

Round 3

Entering the final round here at UFC 262 and I think Chookagian needs a finish here. Chookagian steps forward with a jab and front kick to start her striking. Araujo leaps forward with a left hook that connects.

Chookagian circles on the outside and lands a couple of jabs. Big right straight lands for Araujo. Lead left hook lands for Araujo and she seems to be getting a bit of a second wind here in the third round.

Chookagian continues to pop the jab and she lands a big right hook to the body. Big front knee lands for Chookagian and Araujo’s eye is starting to swell. A sloppy 1-2 attempt from Araujo falls short.

Good jab lands for Chookagian and she’s landing at will with that jab. However, there’s not a ton of power on any of these shots. Hook to the body and a follow up kick lands for Katlyn Chookagian.

Araujo shoots in for a takedown and can’t land it. Chookagian lands a big knee on the break and a huge 1-2 lands for Chookagian. Big leg kick for Katlyn Chookagian. Chookagian is lighting Araujo up here in the third round.

More shots land for Katlyn Chookagian and she’s in cruise control here in the third. The final bell sounds and it was a dominant third round for Katlyn Chookagian. However, I think it wasn’t enough and I have it 2-1 Araujo at UFC 262.

Katlyn Chookagian def. Viviane Araujo by Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)

UFC 262 Preview: Viviane Araujo – Katlyn Chookagian

Tomorrow night on the main card of UFC 262 we will see a pivotal matchup in the women’s flyweight division. Top ten contenders will go head-to-head as Katlyn Chookagian (15-4) takes on the rising contender Viviane Araujo (10-2).

This is a massive opportunity for Viviane Araujo to jump right into title contention. Katlyn Chookagian is widely considered one of the very best and Viviane Araujo is widely considered to be one of the top rising UFC contenders at flyweight.

The Brazilian has won two straight since her decision loss to Jessica Eye at UFC 245. The last time we saw Araujo was back in January when she took on the tough and very durable Roxanne Modafferi.

To me, this was the best performance of Araujo’s career. She was poised and looked good against a fighter that makes it very difficult to look good. She’s looking to ride that momentum into UFC 262 and into title contention.

Katlyn Chookagian is without a doubt the third best flyweight in the UFC. Chookagian has been in the UFC since 2016 and she’s gone 8-4. However, her for losses were to two UFC champions and two former title challengers.

Since 2019, Chookagian has gone 4-2 with wins over JoJo Calderwood, Jennifer Maia, and Cynthia Calvillo. The Calvillo win came back at UFC 255 which was a nice bounce back win after she was stopped in the first round by Jessica Andrade.

UFC 262 Prediction

The intriguing thing about this UFC 262 matchup is the striking. I really love the striking game of Araujo and I loved what I saw in her last fight. However, can she keep up with the activity and the pressure of Katlyn Chookagian.

Chookagian might not throw everything into her shots, but she’s going to have nonstop movement and action. She is extremely tough to beat when fights go to the scorecards. In my opinion, if UFC 262 goes to a decision this fight is Chookagian’s to lose.

I will know a lot early on in the first round. If Araujo has the power to really sting Chookagian, it can definitely be a good night for her. However, Chookagian has been in there with the very best and there’s a reason why she’s only lost to the best. I think she gets the decision nod tomorrow night.

Prediction: Katlyn Chookagian by Unanimous Decision

After dominant win at UFC 261, what’s next for Valentina Shevchenko?

This past Saturday at UFC 261 we got to see a flyweight title fight that the world was intrigued by. The undisputed flyweight queen Valentina Shevchenko (21-3) defended her title against former strawweight champion Jessica Andrade (21-9).

Heading into the fight, the UFC and Dana White really hyped up the former strawweight champion to build interest. The thought was that the power and pure strength of Andrade could give Valentina Shevchenko problems she has yet to deal with.

However, let’s not forget that Shevchenko has fought 40 minutes with Amanda Nunes (21-4). Nevertheless, the UFC was building up Andrade was a truly formattable challenger for the title.

Well, on Saturday night, Valentina Shevchenko made a massive statement to everyone. Dana White said that Shevchenko fought like a demon at UFC 261 who was pissed off at everyone.

Shevchenko did what everyone said Andrade needed to do at UFC 261. She engaged Andrade in the clinch and in close quarters. However, Andrade couldn’t do anything and Shevchenko showed just how strong she is.

Shevchenko ragdolled the former UFC strawweight champion on Saturday night. There wasn’t one aspect of the fight that she didn’t dominate. In the second round, she secured the crucifix position off of a powerful takedown and got the TKO win.

What’s next after UFC 261?

At UFC 261, Valentina Shevchenko once again proved that there are levels to this game and nobody is even close to hers at 125 pounds. She’s so far ahead of the rest of these ladies it’s not even funny.

The thing that makes her so special is how well-rounded she is as a martial artist. She has elite striking, elite grappling and she’s stronger than most of the bantamweights on the roster.

The only person on the entire UFC roster that can compete with Shevchenko is Amanda Nunes. This is not an exaggeration or being a victim of the moment, but I truly believe that Shevchenko is the second greatest female mixed martial artist we’ve ever seen.

She is inches behind Nunes and if you have a hard time believing that, watch their second fight from UFC 215. Personally, I scored that fight for Shevchenko and if she would’ve won that split decision, she would be called the greatest.

In my perfect world, I would love to see the trilogy between these two ladies, but Dana White has dismissed that. In terms of the next contender at flyweight, there are a couple of upcoming UFC matchups to watch.

A few weeks from now, Katlyn Chookagian (15-4) takes on Viviane Araujo (10-2) at UFC 262. Then, in June, Lauren Murphy (14-4) takes on JoJo Calderwood (15-5). One of these four ladies will get the next crack at the champion. My only advice to whoever gets that shot is good luck because you’re going to need it.

UFC books Katlyn Chookagian – Viviane Araujo

The UFC has finalized a big matchup in the women’s flyweight division. ESPN’s Brett Okamoto was the first to report that the promotion has finalized a matchup between former title challenger, Katlyn Chookagian (15-4), and Viviane Araujo (10-2).

The matchup will take place on May 15th. Araujo has shown a ton of promise in her young UFC career. She made her debut with the promotion back in 2019. After her first win by knockout, the promotion gave her former title challenger, Alexis Davis, in her second bout.

Again, Araujo impressed picking up a unanimous decision over Davis. Araujo made a jump up in competition for her next fight taking on Jessica Eye. That night, Araujo lost just her second career fight.

However, she’s bounced back from that loss strong in the last few months. In September she made her only UFC appearance of 2020 and won by decision. Then, she took on the tough Roxanne Modafferi in January and won by unanimous decision.

Going 4-1 in her UFC career against some stiff competition has seen Araujo rise through the rankings. When she makes the walk against Chookagian, she will do it as the seventh ranked flyweight in the UFC.

UFC title eliminator?

The UFC’s flyweight division has been very fluid in terms of contenders over the past couple of years. However, one staple near the top has been Katlyn Chookagian. Chookagian is currently the second ranked flyweight in the promotion.

In her last 11 fights inside the octagon, Chookagian is 7-4. However, one of those losses was to the champion and the other three were to top competition. Her last loss came against former UFC strawweight champion, Jessica Andrade.

Andrade is next in line to fight for the title, but Chookagian isn’t far away. Back at UFC 255, Chookagian took on Cythia Calvillo. Calvillo looked like she could be a challenger for the title, however, Chookagian was having none of it.

Over the course of three rounds, Chookagian controlled the fight and won by decision. If she’s able to defeat Araujo in May, she could very well be in line for a rematch and another shot at the UFC flyweight title. Should be a fun one in a few months.

After her big win at UFC 258, what’s next for Alexa Grasso?

This past Saturday at UFC 258, the women’s flyweight division was on display in the co-main event. One of the promotion’s top prospects, Maycee Barber (8-2), was making her return against Alexa Grasso (13-3).

Barber has claimed for the last couple of years that she was going to be the youngest champion in UFC history. Those plans were derailed by a knee injury and a loss last year, but she insisted that she was going to make a statement at UFC 258.

Alexa Grasso was making her second appearance in the flyweight division. After spending years depleting herself to make 115, Grasso moved up to 125. The decision to move up to the flyweight division was the best possible decision Grasso could have made.

When the fight started on Saturday, Barber seemed anxious while Grasso seemed calm and composed. Through the first two rounds, anytime Barber would come forward, Grasso would sting her with beautiful combinations.

What really impressed me was the fact that Barber couldn’t even get the advantage in the grappling. Grasso controlled most of the grappling exchanges at UFC 258 which I think nobody anticipated going into the fight.

In the third round, Barber went all out trying to get a finish. You have to give her credit for that, and Grasso withstood the storm from Barber. While Barber took the final round, Grasso walked away with her hand raised on Saturday night.

What’s next after UFC 258?

The UFC’s flyweight division has a very exciting new contender in Alexa Grasso. I’m very interested to see how the promotion moves her forward after her big win on Saturday night. With that, they have a couple of different paths.

The first path is giving her a slight step up in the rankings in terms of opponents. With that, you’d have someone like Viviane Araujo (10-2) who is currently ranked seventh. I think that would be a fantastic matchup and a lot of fun for the fans.

However, if they want to move her up quicker than that, perhaps a matchup against Lauren Murphy (14-4) or Katlyn Chookagian (15-4) could be next. If that’s what Grasso got next, she could just be one win away from a UFC title shot.

Again, it’ll be very interesting to see how the promotion goes with her. Either way, it’s exciting times in the flyweight division.

What’s next for JoJo Calderwood after UFC 257?

This past Saturday at UFC 257, Joanne “JoJo” Calderwood (15-5) took on Jessica Eye (15-9, 1 NC) on the PPV main card. Both of these flyweight contenders had a lot on the line on Saturday night.

Whoever won this fight was going to be in a position where they could get a top five opponent next. However, a loss would put them way back in the UFC flyweight division. Calderwood had a lot to prove on Saturday night.

Originally, JoJo Calderwood was supposed to get a UFC title shot back in June of last year. However, Valentina Shevchenko injured her knee and the fight was scrapped. The promotion offered to allow Calderwood to wait for the title shot.

However, Calderwood wanted to stay active. She said that she didn’t want a lengthy layoff leading into her first UFC title shot. With that in mind, she took a fight against Jennifer Maia. She was submitted in the first round and as a result, lost her UFC title shot.

At UFC 257, she had the chance to get back on track and that’s what she did. Over the course of three rounds, Calderwood used her effective kicks and knees to keep Eye at range. She mixed up her shots well and was able to walk away with a unanimous decision victory.

What’s next after UFC 257?

As mentioned, Calderwood was supposed to get a title shot last year. With this win at UFC 257, I think she’s right back near that conversation. However, she’s going to need one more win to get that shot at the title.

In looking at the rankings, I believe there are a couple of matchups that make a lot of sense for Calderwood. For Calderwood’s next fight, I would pair her up against either Katlyn Chookagian (15-4) or Lauren Murphy (14-4).

Both of those contenders are near a title shot, however, we already know that Jessica Andrade is getting the next crack at the UFC title. Chookagian and Murphy should honestly fight, however, Murphy doesn’t seem interested in that matchup.

I think the promotion should put Calderwood against one of those two contenders with a title shot on the line. Again, Calderwood was supposed to get the shot before Shevchenko was hurt. She still deserves to be in the conversation.

If the UFC pairs up Calderwood with one of those two, the winner would be in a great position to challenge the winner of Shevchenko – Andrade. It’ll be interesting to see how this situation at flyweight plays out.