If you let her, Tecia Torres will wrestle you to death for three full rounds. That’s what she did to defeat Rose Namajunas back in the day, and that’s what she’ll do tonight if Michelle Waterson lets her. Waterson is more well-rounded, but the former Invicta FC champ does have holes in her game, as evidenced by her loss to Namajunas by submission. This is your UFC 218 main card opener.

They waste no time mixing it up in the first, with Waterson showing off her grappling acumen and Torres forced to defend or have her back taken. She avoids trouble, flexes some of her wrestler’s intensity, and though Waterson tries to pick away at her with kicks, Torres’ knees in close are racking up points.

Waterson gets Torres down in Round 2 with a head/arm throw, and for much of the frame the “Karate Hottie” is on top, making Torres’ life miserable.

Torres’ pressure is paying dividends in the third, and her output has Waterson’s eye swelling up, playing catch-up in the scrambles, and punching the crap out of her when Torres is in back-mount. Torres almost gets the stoppage, but Waterson survives to the final horn.

 

Results: Tecia Torres def. Michelle Waterson via Unanimous Decision