Ronda Rousey, it’s your move.

On Saturday night in the co-main event at UFC Fight Night Chicago, Miesha Tate proved to be a cut above Jessica “Evil” Eye as she captured a unanimous-decision win. UFC News provided the official scorecards:

With the victory, Tate did her part to secure a third shot at Rousey and second crack at the UFC women’s bantamweight championship. If Rousey beats Bethe Correia on Saturday, August 1, the third bout will be set.

Tate showed off every bit of her game against Eye. After taking some hard shots early on, Tate bit down on her mouthpiece and pushed forward. She wasn’t simply there to take punishment, Tate started to land her own strikes moments later. This big right hand put Eye on the canvas and changed the fight’s momentum. UFC Chicago had the highlights:

The knockdown happened too late in the round for Tate to get the finish, but she did some damage to Eye’s face and confidence with elbows from top position.

In the second round, it was clear Tate had taken control. She controlled the center of the Octagon and landed another big shot that dropped Eye for a second time. Again, Tate was unable to finish, but it wasn’t because of a lack of effort.

She was looking for a choke to close out the fight, but to Eye’s credit, she defended the submission well and survived the round.

The third round brought out Tate’s wrestling. Before the bout started, most expected her to have an advantage on the ground, but she waited until the final frame to show her grappling prowess.

Tate secured a solid takedown and took Eye’s back. Despite working for a finish from back mount, referee Yves Lavigne stood the two women up with just 32 seconds left in the fight. It proved to be inconsequential as Tate had already proved her superiority.

NASCAR driver Kevin Harvick was one of many to congratulate Tate on her dominant win.

Fox Sports’ Damon Martin doesn’t think Tate can beat Rousey, but he can’t knock her hustle:

Tate has lost to Rousey twice by armbar submission, but she’s the only opponent to make it out of the first round against the champion. Tate lasted until the third round in their last meeting at UFC 168 in December 2013.

It’s a tribute to Rousey’s dominance that we’re forced to pump up the biggest loser to find a suitable contender, but that’s where we are in the women’s bantamweight division. Like it or not, if Rousey wins on Saturday, we’ll have ourselves a trilogy.


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