Sunday, July 14, 2013

Invicta FC pretty good but company still needs work

Last night's Invicta show from Kansas City was on PPV in most of North America but foreign viewers still had to watch it on the dreaded UStream. So I watched it on cable. It doesn't mean they can forego a TV deal because it's hard to make money on PPV alone. I believe a TV deal is questionable at this point. So Invicta has to try and sell their PPVs to casual fans. The faithful don't generate enough revenue. The way the UFC does this is to air prelims on free TV. Invicta aired last night's prelims free on UStream. Unfortunately they had problems with the prelims and only aired two matches and had an hour of dead time to fill. When the UFC airs prelims, they treat it like a different show. They air a PPV quality match as the prelim main event. Invicta could have done that but they moved Tecia Torres vs Rose Namajunas from the prelims to the main show. When they started having prelim problems, they should have moved that match back to the prelims. If a casual fan is on the fence about buying the PPV, an hour of dead time isn't going to convince them to buy it. Torres vs Namajunas was main event quality and would have generated buys. They can't miss opportunities like that. I also think the main show is too long for the casual fan. Making the show shorter would give Invicta time to run video bios to make the casual fan more familiar with the fighters. If they tried to do that now, the show would run until 3AM. Sometimes less is more. I've noticed on past Invicta shows that the Missouri judges seem to muff close matches. It was a bigger problem on this show. There were at least three matches that made me wonder what the judges were watching. The main event between Cris Cyborg and Marloes Coenen had no such problem. I guess Marloes thought she could wear Cyborg out and beat her in the later rounds. It didn't work. Cyborg seemed aware of this strategy and was more patient than I have seen her in the past. And her takedown defense is outstanding. Cyborg won by fourth round TKO and is the new Invicta Featherweight Champion. There is already talk that Ediane Gomes will challenge her next. Good luck with that. Claudia Gadelha won by third round TKO over Ayaka Hamasaki and gets a shot at Carla Esparza's Strawweight Championship. Ayaka was a little unlucky but Claudia was clearly stronger. Remember she has fought most of her career at 125. Lauren Taylor won over Sarah D'Alelio by unanimous decision. I scored it 29-28 for Sarah. So I thought the judges blew that one. Leslie Smith won over Jennifer Maia by unanimous decision and gets a shot at Barb Honchak's Flyweight Championship. I scored it 29-28 for Leslie. Former Atomweight Champion Jessica Penne won over Nicdali Rivera-Calanoc by first round rear naked choke. That's what I expected. Joanne Calderwood won by unanimous decision over Norma Rueda Center. I scored it 29-28 for Joanne. I've said this before but I would like to see Joanne add some takedowns and ground and pound to her formidable kickboxing. Norma showed that good defense can stifle Joanne a bit. MIZUKI won over Bec Hyatt by unanimous decision. I scored it 29-28 for MIZUKI. Most fans knew nothing about MIZUKI but she is a very mature 18 year old fighter. She seemed to run out of gas in round three so I think she needs to work on her endurance. They don't usually fight three five minute rounds in Japan. Miriam Nakamoto won over Duda Yankovich by first round TKO. No surprise there. Tecia Torres won over Rose Namajunas by unanimous decision. This was the best match on the show. I scored it a draw and a split decision either way would have been OK. But for one of those judges to score it 30-27 for Tecia is just incompetent. There is no excuse for that. Both girls are very exciting fighters and I expect a lot from them in the future. The problems with the prelims started when Charmaine Tweet couldn't get a visa and dropped out of her match with Ediane Gomes. Charmaine lives in Canada and committed to the match two weeks ago not knowing if she could get a visa. Naughty, naughty. They brought in Tamikka Brents to fight Gomes but Brents suffered a knee injury while warming up and the match was cancelled. Then Veronica Rothenhausler passed out and her match with Mollie Estes was cancelled. Then Livia von Plettenberg weighed in at 113 for her 105lb match with Cassie Robb. Von Plettenberg normally fights at 115 and I don't think she can make 105. So that's on Invicta. They brought in perennial last minute replacement Kathina Catron to fight at a catchweight of 123lb. Katrina won by unanimous decision in a dull match. Emily Kagan won by split decision over Ashley Cummins. I scored it 29-28 for Ashley. Two judges scored it 30-27 for Emily. A lot of fans thought they messed that one up. Invicta should run their next show in October on PPV.

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