Women's MMA grew by leaps and bounds in 2012, largely due to the rise of Ronda Rousey as one of the most popular fighters in the sport.
But right there at the forefront was Invicta Fighting Championships, which burst onto the scene with three all-female cards in 2012 featuring some of the top names in the sport, including Marloes Coenen, Shayna Baszler, Sara McMann and Liz Carmouche – who in February challenges Rousey for her new UFC bantamweight title in the main event of UFC 157.
The likelihood appears to be that more and more fighters will graduate from Invicta to the UFC now that women's MMA has broken into the world's biggest promotion. And with that, Invicta also is graduating to the next level.
Its next show, Invicta FC 4: Esparza vs. Gadelha, will air live on Internet pay-per-view.
MMA Fight Corner first brought news of the promotion's decision, and company president Shannon Knapp confirmed the news to MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com
And Knapp said the price point for the show will be one fans should be comfortable with.
"We haven't announced the price yet, but I will go on record saying it will be under $10," she told MMAjunkie.com. "It will be offered for a modest price. We aren't out to gouge people."
It will be a new experiment for Invicta, which offered its first three fights to fans for free with an online stream.
Invicta FC 4 takes place Jan. 5 at Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kan., and features a main event strawweight title fight between Carla Esparza and Claudia Gadelha. In addition Shayna Baszler meets Alexis Davis in the co-main event.
The full Invicta FC 4 card now includes:
MAIN CARD (pay-per-view)
Carla Esparza vs. Claudia Gadelha - for inaugural strawweight title
Shayna Baszler vs. Alexis Davis
Raquel Pennington vs. Leslie Smith
Sarah D'Alelio vs. Amanda Nunes
Ediane Gomes vs. Hiroko Yamanaka
Joanne Calderwood vs. Bec Hyatt
Stephanie Frausto vs. Cassie Rodish
Amanda Bell vs. Tamikka Brents
Jodie Esquibel vs. Liz McCarthy
Emily Kagan vs. Rose Namajunas
Tecia Torres vs. Paige VanZant
Katalina Malungahu vs. Veronica Rothenhausler
But until its next event in two weeks, you can get caught up on some of the promotion's highlights from its first three cards in the video below.