The Tuff-N-Uff 110-pound women’s championship will once again be up for grabs on September 2nd when amateur prospects Jordan McDonald and Jinh Yu face off at Tuff-N-Uff: “Festibrawl 3” in Las Vegas, Nevada. Tuff-N-Uff officials confirmed plans for the featured matchup earlier this week.
McDonald challenged for the title in her August 2011 promotional debut, but succumbed to a flying triangle choke from “Lightning” Liz McCarthy, who vacated the belt prior to her pro debut this past month. Yu will give up an experience edge to McDonald, but she is coming off of a win in October.
McDonald (4-3-0) earned stoppage victories in four of her first five fights before moving from Murrells Inlet, South Carolina to live and train in Las Vegas with some of MMA’s top fighters. She engaged in a competitive bout with the unbeaten McCarthy one year ago before falling victim to the triangle choke. In April, McDonald returned to Tuff-N-Uff to face another undefeated foe, Paulina “Fire Fox” Granados, and dropped a razor-thin Split Decision in a non-title fight. McDonald was unable to mount much offence in the close fight with Granados and had welcomed an opportunity for a rematch when it was proposed by Tuff-N-Uff officials, but she will instead face off against a different Texas-based opponent next month.
Yu (3-1-0) is still early in her mixed martial arts career, but she has had solid showings in each of her four fights to date. After a pair of stoppage victories, Yu suffered a submission loss to Texas Amateur Cage Fighting champion Alyssa “The Bully” Conway in August 2009 and took a two-year hiatus from competition. She returned to action in October as a part of the all-female Freestyle Cage Fighting 49 card and earned a Split Decision victory over Cristina Crist in a back-and-forth battle. Yu now takes a big step up in competition for the Tuff-N-Uff title fight, but a win over the more experienced McDonald would immediately establish Yu as one of the sport’s top young prospects to watch for.
The title bout between McDonald and Yu has not gone without some controversy, however, as Granados expressed her frustrations over the fight booking earlier this month. Feeling that she should be next in line to compete for the title due to her past victory over McDonald, Granados made her thoughts known on social media, to no avail. Granados is expected to return to Tuff-N-Uff in October, but it has not yet been determined whether she will be a part of a championship bout.
McDonald addressed the situation surrounding her bout with Yu and her fighting future when speaking with MMARising.com on Friday.
“I wasn’t aware of [Granados's comments], but it doesn’t surprise me,” McDonald says. “Granados has been somewhat disrespectful and overly cocky ever since our bout in which she BARELY beat me by Split Decision. For someone who got the win by the skin of her teeth without inflicting any damage on her opponent, she sure has been mouthy. I didn’t ‘show up’ for that fight and she’s lucky I was having such an off night. I think the promotion saw that and therefore wanted to host the fight again. She was offered the [rematch] for the belt against me and she refused, so I don’t know why she has anything to say about it at all. She had the chance to fight for the belt and she chose not to.
“As for fighting again for the belt, I don’t feel any added pressure. Less, in fact, because all I’m asking of myself this time around is just for me to show up and do what I can do. I was really frustrated with my performance last time I fought. I guess some nights you’re just off. I know that if I show up and do what I can do, I’ll get the win. I’m going in confident, but instead of being obsessed with getting the victory, I’m just simplifying things and going in there to do my thing. I learned what it feels like to lose these last two fights and that’s a shitty feeling. I learned that in order to not feel that way again I have to perform and so that’s what I’m focusing on and that’s what I’m going to do.
“I’m definitely looking to make this my last ammy fight and I’m really hoping I can have my pro debut with Invicta FC,” McDonald added. “October would be a little soon, but their next card is tentatively scheduled for February and that would be awesome. I’m focusing on this fight right now and then turning my attention to trying to get on with Invicta. They’re absolutely where I want to be in the near future!”
Tuff-N-Uff: “Festibrawl 3” takes place on September 2nd at South Point Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
(Photo Credit: NAAFS)