Leslie Smith vs Jessamyn Duke Added To UFC Fight Night 45Former Invicta FC star Leslie “The Peacemaker” Smith looks to pick up her first Octagon victory when she returns to action at UFC Fight Night 45: “Cerrone vs Miller” on July 16th in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Smith is set to face off against TUF 18 quarterfinalist Jessamyn “The Gun” Duke.

UFC officials announced the bantamweight bout today. Smith stepped in on short notice to face Sarah Kaufman in a rematch at the TUF Nations Finale in April, but dropped a Unanimous Decision. Duke also seeks redemption after she suffered a decision loss to Bethe “Pitbull” Correia at UFC 172.

Smith (6-5-1) has been a top contender at both 125 and 135 pounds during the past two years. The six-time Invicta FC veteran went unbeaten in her first three fights for the promotion before suffering a contentious Split Decision loss to Kaufman at Invicta FC 5. The defeat prompted Smith to drop down to the flyweight division and she defeated Jennifer Maia in her first fight at 125. However, her bid for the Invicta FC Flyweight Championship ended in a hard-fought defeat and she was unable to mount much offence in the short-notice rematch with Kaufman in April that ended with Kaufman’s hand raised.

Duke (3-1-0, 1 NC) is a highly-touted prospect in the women’s bantamweight division, but she may find herself in a must-win situation against Smith. After opening her pro career with back-to-back stoppage wins for Invicta FC, Duke was brutally knocked out by “The Queen of Mean” Miriam Nakamoto at Invicta FC 5. The result of the fight was later overturned to a No Contest due to an illegal Nakamoto knee and Duke advanced to the quarterfinal round of TUF 18 before losing to Raquel “Rocky” Pennington. She won her official UFC debut in November and now looks to rebound from the loss to Correia.

UFC Fight Night 45: “Cerrone vs Miller” takes place on July 16th at Revel Casino Hotel in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The event features a lightweight bout between Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone and Jim Miller.



(Photo Credit: UFC)

  1. I am pretty sure Leslie will win this one. Wonder if Jessamyn will be cut off the UFC, if she loses again.

    Duke should be 3-3, if we count her losses to Miriam Nakamoto and Rachel Pennington.

  2. Rafael I have to agree. Both of these magnificent women will be out for blood. In the end, I just think Leslie’s significant edge in experience and quality of opponents will prevail over Jessamyn’s enormous potential and rapid improvement under the tutelage of Ronda Rousey and her trainers. Should be a fight of the night contender for sure.

  3. Also I think that neither of these girls is in danger of being cut after a loss. They are extremely exciting both of them, and Jessamyn just had an off night I believe against Correia. Not that it should matter, but they are both two of the most attractive women in the UFC as well.

  4. Loser goes back Invicta. Unless both put on a war. We are going to see a lot of traffic between UFC and Invicta over the next few years.

  5. I think that (much like Baszler) Duke has shown trouble with fighters that keep on putting pressure on her.

    Her fights against Raquel Pennington and Correia show that.So, I don’t think she had an off night (Edmond seemed to think she was doing great and that she was winning the fight…). And Leslie is the type of girl that puts a lot of pressure and fights non-stop.

    I think she will womanhandle Duke.

    As to Baszler (offtopic, I know), she will lose to Correia for the same reason… she can’t stand the pressure (check her fights against Cyborg, Kaufman, Peña, LaRosa and Kobold). Correia will maintain her pace throughout the fight, and Baszler usually gasses after the first round.