The year 2019 was challenging for the most UFC champions. In 2020, while the renowned MMA pros will look out to protect their legacies, furthering the evolution of martial arts, the young prospects will work harder than ever to earn their places under the sun.
Having in concern the number of scheduled fights on the 2020 UFC Roster, it’s easy to and overlook some of the potential rising stars who might end up showing us some quite impressive results by the end of the year.
For those wondering which female competitors are expected to put up the fight to remember in the upcoming year, here is, in no particular order, a list of 10 candidates to watch out for.
1. Molly “Meatball” McCann
After her UFC debut fail, some expected never to see this spunky fighter again. Still, McCann proved them wrong by winning three times since then.
2. Maycee “The Future” Barber
Barber’s quite a definition of a rising star in the world of MMA: Being only 21, she is the youngest contestant to raise the bar in the UFC octagon.
3. Angela “Unstoppable” Lee
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Who's ready to kick ass in 2020?! Get those game faces on! 💪🏼👊🏼💥 Let's make this year, the best one yet! 💯 #Repost @evolvefightgear ・・・ “On the other side of a storm is the strength that comes from having navigated through it. Raise your sail and begin.” – Gregory S. Williams The EVOLVE Warrior 2.0 T-Shirt worn by ONE Atomweight World Champion Angela Lee from the EVOLVE Fight Team! Tap the link in the bio to see more! #UnleashTheWarrior
Lee is another young prospect who’s expected to show some feisty moves in 2020, after successfully overcoming car crash injuries and bouncing back in full strength in October 2019.
4. Zhang “Magnum” Weili
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Weili is a serious player who’s most likely to keep both the competition and the spectators on their toes during 2020. Since her MMA debut in 2013, she’s proven to be a force to be reckoned with.
5. Joanna Jędrzejczyk
Ever since she was 16, Jędrzejczyk was passionate about martial arts. Her impressive winning streak and five world titles make her an intimidating opponent everyone should look out for in 2020.
6. Emily “Spitfire” Whitmire
Whitmire made her debut in 2017, and has since then had the same number of wins and losses, but is an interesting contender to keep an eye on in 2020. She is scheduled to fight with Polyana Viana in this year’s UFC 248.
7. Polyana “Lady of Steel” Viana
This gritty Brazilian fighter is sure to put up a show worth watching this year. On a side note, this skilled MMA fighter came into the public eye’s focus in 2019 when she defended herself from a street robber using her martial arts skills. Although she faced a lot of criticism, she also received a lot of support along the way.
8. Amanda “The Lioness” Nunes
Nunes is a seasoned player with a long list of awards and accomplishments. In 2019, it took her only 51 seconds to knock out Cris “Cyborg” Nunes and take over her title in style.
9. Valentina “Bullet” Shevchenko
Shevchenko is a Kyrgyzstani fighter who is considered to be one of the best MMA contendents in the world. Watch out for this lady in the year to come: She’s always full of surprises.
10. Jéssica “The Chiropractor” Andrade
Another Brazilian master signed to the Ultimate Fighting Championship, Andrade is definitely a lady you don’t want to miss this year.
We can expect some very engaging fights in the upcoming year, and for all of you aficionados out there, this list can be well worth bookmarking. Watch out for those kickass ladies, as they are the stars of the year who might just yet surprise us.
Which ladies do you expect to make their mark in 2020, and which ones might fade into oblivion? Who do you see yourself cheering for this year, and who do you think needs to put in some more work? Let us know in the comments below.
Jane Evans is a college paper writer and a blogger from York. She loves to travel and talk about modern art, computer games, and new technologies, but there’s more to Jane than meets the eye. From a very young age, she loved swimming, outdoor activities, and – you guessed it – martial arts, especially karate. To find out even more about Jane, find her on Twitter.