Carla Esparza dominates Rose Namajunas in UFC win

Yahoo Sports

LAS VEGAS – After three submissions in as many fights during the filming of "The Ultimate Fighter," Rose Namajunas was the trendy pick to win the inaugural UFC strawweight championship.

Even Carla Esparza, who held the 115-pound belt in Invicta, wondered if she had what it took to beat Namajunas.

But she easily did, using her wrestling to throttle Namajunas repeatedly before finishing the fight in the third round with a rear naked choke.
— Kevin Iole

Carla Esparza (top) punches Rose Namajunas in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
83060496
Carla Esparza (top) punches Rose Namajunas in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
(L-R) Rose Namajunas kicks Carla Esparza in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
83060374
(L-R) Rose Namajunas kicks Carla Esparza in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - DECEMBER 12: (R-L) Rose Namajunas knees Carla Esparza in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
83060373
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - DECEMBER 12: (R-L) Rose Namajunas knees Carla Esparza in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Scroll to continue with content
Ad
(R-L) Carla Esparza punches Rose Namajunas in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
83060382
(R-L) Carla Esparza punches Rose Namajunas in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
UFC strawweight Carla Esparza steps on the scale during The Ultimate Fighter Finale weigh-ins at the Palms Casino Resort on December 11, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
83043903
UFC strawweight Carla Esparza steps on the scale during The Ultimate Fighter Finale weigh-ins at the Palms Casino Resort on December 11, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Carla Esparza gets her hands wrapped backstage during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Todd Lussier/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
83059772
Carla Esparza gets her hands wrapped backstage during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Todd Lussier/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
(L-R) Rose Namajunas exchanges punches with Carla Esparza in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
83060372
(L-R) Rose Namajunas exchanges punches with Carla Esparza in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
(R-L) Rose Namajunas and Carla Esparza face-off in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
83060360
(R-L) Rose Namajunas and Carla Esparza face-off in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Carla Esparza (top) takes an up-kick from Rose Namajunas in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
83060490
Carla Esparza (top) takes an up-kick from Rose Namajunas in their strawweight championship fight during The Ultimate Fighter Finale event inside the Pearl concert theater at the Palms Casino Resort on December 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

What to Read Next