Many people have been asking me if Roxanne Modafferi would be blogging about her time on TUF here on Fightlinker. She is blogging, but at a more respectable site called Mass-MMA (cuz she’s from Massachusetts) that is less likely to inadvertently piss off the UFC or have commenters that discuss the taste of TUF contestants’ vaginas. This is why we can’t have nice things, kids.
We were secluded to our hotel rooms at first- luckily, I had the final volume of The Wheel of Time to keep me company. I texted Tara occasionally, read a ton, and tried to deal with the immense amount of anxiety, which I’d never experienced before. Even before my Strikeforce title fight against Sarah Kaufman I didn’t feel so anxious. Everything was on the line. Getting into TUF would mean a resurgence of my faltering career. My winning streak was broken by the infamous powerbomb slam (which is like one of the first things that comes up when you google my name! Nooooo! ). My record spiraled downward with unsuccessful cuts to 125 lbs against top athletes in that weight division.
I HAD to win my elimination fight. It embodied the very essence of my dream and ultimate goal- to fight in the UFC someday. After ten years of fighting and double that of training, my body is feeling the wear and tear, so I knew this might be my last chance. I might not have time to slowly climb the ranks as a younger fighter might. It was also very important to me to show my coach that I could do what he taught me. I had joined Groundslam over one years ago. Katsumura-san and BJ Kojima-san especially taught me a lot.
After weigh-ins, I found out I was fighting Valerie Letourneaux. Tara LaRosa and I conducted stealthy ninja-like research, by making notes of who was at interviews and doctors checks at TUF tryouts. Then, we compared notes via Facebook once we got home, after looking everybody up. We hadn’t been able to get much info about her, except that she trained at GSP’s gym.
I was happy to have Brian Caraway in my corner. I had met him once when he came to Japan for UFC Japan (and fought one of my training partners Mizugaki, but we won’t go there). But I felt comfortable with him there. Once the fight started, I felt more experienced than I ever have before in a fight. Brian’s coaching helped, and I after a tussle, managed to take her back and got the choke. I have been focusing on rear naked choke lately, and variations of them, one being my hissatsu waza (finisher move). I’m thrilled to have gotten it.
The win rejuvenated my self-confidence as a fighter – yes, I do belong in the cage – and I knew I won the most important fight of my life. I was so happy.
That hissatsu waza was pretty good. Roxy was working some interesting Cody MacKenzie-esque grips to set that up but I’d like to note it was a punch to the tit that got Letourneaux to drop her arm so Roxy could choke her. There was that and her sneaky backwards guard pass – another thing you don’t see too often in MMA fights. It feels like Roxy might have a number of interesting techniques she’s bringing back from Japan that many fighters may not be prepared for.
(pic via RoxanneModafferi.net)