MMA Odds and Ends for Friday: Big Names Rumored For TUF 18

Jessamyn Duke Veteran MMA journalist Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer recently released the rumored list of female bantamweight fighters that are set to appear on season 18 of “The Ultimate Fighter,” which is being filmed in the next few weeks and which will air this fall. Here are the rumored fighters: Marcia Allen Shayna Baszler Revelina Berto Jessamyn Duke Ashlee Evans-Smith Tonya Evinger Tara LaRosa Valerie Letourneau Bethany Marshall Lia Mata’afa Gina Mazany Katie Merrill Roxanne Modafferi Peggy Morgan Julianna Pen Raquel Pennington Colleen Schneider Again, this list is no set in stone but all of these women tried out for the show in Las Vegas and there is definitely some talent here. Among the most prominent fighters are Shayna Baszler, Jessamyn Duke, Tonya Evinger, Tara LaRosa and Roxanne Modaferri, all of whom are long-time veterans of women’s MMA. There has been no list of the rumored men’s bantamweights that will appear on the show but it’s likely they’ll be leaked out in the coming weeks and months. Both the men and women will be coached by UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey and No. 1 contender Cat Zingano, who will face off against each other this December. UFC on FX 8 Gets Reshuffling The UFC on FX 8 card continued to undergo changes, and it was reported today by that middleweight Costa Philippou is out of his bout against Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza with a cut and in his place steps Chris Camozzi, who was set to fight Rafael “Sapo” Natal. Natal will now fight UFC newcomer Joao Zeferino instead. Camozzi is currently riding a four-fight win streak but “Jacare” is a massive step up in competition and Camozzi will likely open as a major underdog. My gut tells me that Souza opens around -300, with the comeback on Camozzi being +250, but it’s possible the public bets on Camozzi since they did in his last outing against Nick Ring at UFC 154 (and they were correct in doing so). But expect the sharp action to come in on “Jacare,” who has a multitude of advantages in this bout, not which of least is his A-plus ground game. As for Natal vs. Zeferino, one can expect Natal to open around -250 or even higher. It will be a weak line because Zeferino is a bit of an unknown, but still, this is a fight that Natal should roll in, at least if it’s the Natal that’s been hot as of late. The Camozzi vs. Souza bout will now take the co-main event slot at UFC on FX 8, while Natal vs. Zeferino opens up the evening’s main card. The main event, of course, is a five-round middleweight bout between former UFC light heavyweight champion Vitor Belfort and former Strikeforce middleweight champion Luke Rockhold.

Written by Adam Martin.

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