Invicta Fighting Championships has once again raised the bar for women’s mixed martial arts. Today, the promotion announced a first-of-its-kind tournament, featuring eight of the globe’s top strawweights vying for supremacy on a single evening.
The first Phoenix Rising Series event will stream live and exclusively on UFC FIGHT PASS from Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kan. on Friday, May 3.
The list of strawweight competitors includes:
• MIZUKI (13-5) – Former Invicta FC strawweight title challenger
• Janaisa Morandin (10-2) – Former Invicta FC strawweight title challenger
• Danielle Taylor (10-4) – UFC veteran
• Juliana Lima (9-5) – UFC veteran
• Kailin Curran (4-6) – UFC veteran
• Brianna van Buren (5-2) – Twenty-five-year-old
• Sharon Jacobson (5-4) – Two-time US Open national championship wrestler
• Sunna Davidsdottir (3-0) – Undefeated Icelandic MMA pioneer
“Our Phoenix Rising Series is the culmination of a vision for women’s MMA that began when Invicta was founded,” said Invicta FC President Shannon Knapp. “Continuing to innovate and provide ground-breaking opportunities for women is a source of pride. We’re so excited for our fans to watch the Phoenix Rising Series on UFC FIGHT PASS.”
Bouts in the quarterfinal and semifinal stages will each be one five-minute round, with the tournament championship bout playing out across three five-minute rounds.
A random draw will be utilized prior to the event to determine quarterfinal match-ups. On fight night, the quarterfinal stage’s fastest finisher will then have an opportunity to pick their semifinal round opponent from the three other advancing competitors. Should there be no finishes in the quarterfinal stage, a random draw will again be utilized to determine match-ups.
The Phoenix Rising Series will also have its own distinct broadcast team, helmed by the debut of Invicta FC veteran-turned correspondent Laura Sanko on commentary, serving as the first woman to call play-by-play for a major MMA promotion. Joining her will be another Invicta FC debutant in analyst Jimmy Smith, a veteran voice who has called fights for many of the sport’s biggest promotions, including the UFC.
A tournament reserve match-up, as well as additional information about the Phoenix Rising Series, will be announced in the coming weeks.