MMA Odds and Ends for Friday: Shannon Knapp leaves spot open on Invicta FC 18 for “Cyborg” Justino

Shannon Knapp leaves spot open for Cyborg at Invicta FC 18 in July Invicta FC President Shannon Knapp told MMAJunkie on Thursday that she’s targeting July 29th for Invicta FC 18 and she’s leaving a spot open for current featherweight champion Christine “Cyborg” Justino. Knapp mentioned that she’s targeting July 29 for Invicta FC 18 at a city to be determined Justino (16-1) put to rest the report that she’s fighting Germaine de Randamie at UFC 201 on July 30th.  Instead she suggested that she will be defending her Invicta FC featherweight title next. The 30-year old is coming off a successful UFC debut where she stopped Leslie Smith this past Saturday at UFC 198.   World Series of Fighting signs undefeated prospect Phil Hawes MMAFighting reported on Thursday that Jackson/Winklejohn product Phil Hawes has signed with WSOF. Hawes (3-0) last competed in Season 23 of The Ultimate Fighter where he lost a decision to Andrew Sanchez. Prior that, the 27-year old made his professional debut at Legacy FC 28 earning a second round TKO victory over Thomas Krenzel. He was slated to fight on last years Titan FC 34 card against Lucas Rota however the bout ended up getting cancelled.   UFC cuts Lucas Martins  Despite defeating Robert Whiteford in his last fight, Lucas Martins has been released from the promotion according to MMAFighting.  Martins (16-3) after losing his UFC debut to Edson Barboza at UFC on FX 7 in 2013, the Brazilian went 3-0 earning wins over Jeremy Larsen, Ramiro Hernandez and Alex White. He then suffered back-to-back losses against Darren Elkins and Mirsad Bektic, before picking up a win against Robert Whiteford at UFC Fight Night 86.  Here’s what he had to say about the release. “My manager (Diego) Lima was talking to the UFC, and said that the division is full. Even though I was coming off a win, my contract is over and they told me to get a couple more wins outside the UFC, two nice knockouts, and they would definitely sign me again. I wasn’t expecting that because I was coming off a win, but it’s fine.I’ve done a lot of things in there. There are athletes in the UFC that haven’t done half of what I did, and this is happening to me. I’ll keep my head up and continue doing my job. I’m looking at other fights now and go back to the UFC because they pay us better. I don’t fight for status, I fight for money to help my family.” So what’s next? According to Martins Bellator has already made an offer. “We got an offer from Bellator and it’s great financially. I would be able to have my sponsors in the cage as well since there’s no Reebok there, but I’m going to think about it.”

Written by James Lynch

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