It looks like Rose Namajunas will get her second chance to become a UFC champion later this year.
On Saturday night in Kansas City, Namajunas dismantled Michelle Waterson over two rounds before sinking in a rear-naked choke to earn her fourth victory in the UFC with three of those coming by way of submission.
Afterwards, Namajunas immediately called for the next title shot against the winner of the UFC 211 co-main event between Joanna Jedrzejczyk and Jessica Andrade and it appears her wish will be granted.
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“A ton of hype around [Michelle Waterson] after her win over Paige VanZant and Rose came out tonight and looked like an absolute stud,” UFC president Dana White said about Namajunas when speaking to FOX Sports. “The fight couldn’t have gone more perfect for her.
“I thought she looked incredible tonight and I agreed with her after the fight — I think she’s ready to challenge for the title.”
Namajunas actually fought for the inaugural women’s strawweight title after appearing on “The Ultimate Fighter” season 20 but came up short in her bout against Carla Esparza. Namajunas then suffered her only other loss in the UFC when she fell to former title contender Karolina Kowalkiewicz by split decision last year.
She returned better than ever on Saturday night with a dominant performance over the highly touted Waterson, who shot to stardom following her first-round submission over Paige VanZant last December.
“I think Rose probably learned a lot from that loss just like all these guys do in this business and she definitely came out and showed what she’s all about tonight,” White said.
Of course, before Namajunas can receive a title shot, Jedrzejczyk has to face Andrade next month in Dallas but she’ll clearly be watching with anticipation of hopefully getting the winner later this year.
Namajunas wasn’t ready to give her prediction on the fight, but did add that she sees advantages for both Jedrzejczyk and Andrade depending on how they approach the championship bout.
“I think I match up with those ladies well either way,” Namajunas said about the matchup. “Obviously, they’re two totally different styles.
“I think if Joanna, if she has a good jab against Andrade, Andrade’s going to have some trouble. But she also showed she’s super tough and she didn’t really show her wrestling [in her last fight]. I think she was holding back a little bit. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.”