TUF 20 Newcomer Breakdown: Lisa Ellis

lisa-ellis-picPrior to each UFC card, Jay Primetown takes a close look at debuting fighters. In the latest installment, we look at women’s strawweight Lisa Ellis as she takes on fellow TUF 20 competitor Felice Herrig at the TUF 20 Finale. Lisa Ellis Hometown: Olympia, Washington Age: 32 Height: 5’4” Weight Class: Women’s Strawweight Camp: United Training Center Career Record: 15-8 Key Wins: Jessica Aguilar, Aisling Daly Key Losses: Megumi Fujii, Jessica Penne Background The Olympia, Washington product comes from amateur wrestling background having begun training in it since middle school. She went on to become an All-American in wrestling at the Women’s Open Wrestling National Tournament. She has an excellent pedigree in grappling holding multiple world and national championships. Outside of her participating on TUF 20, she hasn’t fought since 2012 after taking a break from fighting to have a child with her husband, Eddie Ellis. Strengths

  • Excellent grappling credentials
  • Pretty strong when able to gain top control
  • Over 10 finishes with all of those victories coming from a variety of subs
  • Decent inside leg kick


  • Injury concerns from TUF 20
  • Hasn’t had a professional fight in over 2 years
  • Offensive striking is nearly non-existent
  • Has no power in her hands
  • Not active enough on the feet to be competitive against most fighters

  00EllisGrade   Matchup with Felice Herrig On paper, Lisa Ellis has pretty strong credentials. She has an excellent grappling pedigree and is dangerous when she can gain top control on the ground. In her matchup with Felice Herrig, Ellis can compete from a pure grappling stand point . However, Herrig is a far better athlete as well as a better striker. On the feet, Herrig has a major advantage as Ellis’ unwillingness to engage in the striking will give her the edge in the judges’ eyes. While Ellis has a stronger background in grappling, Herrig’s athleticism turns the grappling into a wash. Look for Herrig to win the striking exchanges and even gain positions on the ground in route to a decision win. Ellis does have the better submission game and if she were to win, it would likely via tapout.   UFC Ceiling At 32 years of age and having not fought professionally since 2012, Ellis could be facing some serious ring rust as she enters the octagon. Ellis’ ability to grapple and work submissions on the ground could allow her to be competitive in some bouts. It’s evident from watching a series of her bouts that her ability/athleticism has decreased from earlier in her career. If the UFC had added a women’s strawweight division in 2010, Ellis would have been one of the better fighters in the division. At this point, she is past her peak and it’s difficult to see her competing with the higher level fighters in the division.   Fight Film Check out Lisa Ellis in some of her fights: Lisa Ellis vs. Stephanie Frausto

Lisa Ellis vs. Megumi Fujii

Written by Jay Primetown

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