Former strawweight champion Rose Namajunas added to UFC Vegas 88 in March

By Josh Evanoff - January 10, 2024

Former UFC women’s strawweight champion Rose Namajunas will face Amanda Ribas in March.

Rose Namajunas

‘Thug Rose’ has been out of the cage since a move to flyweight in September. For her first bout up at 125 pounds, Rose Namajunas faced the rising Manon Fiorot. The former champion hoped to hand the contender her first loss on home soil, at UFC Paris. Instead, she suffered yet another setback.

Early in the contest, Rose Namajunas suffered a broken finger. While the former strawweight champion stayed in the matchup and was competitive, she suffered a unanimous decision loss. The defeat was her second in a row, previously losing to Carla Esparza at UFC 274 in May 2022. That fight with ‘Cookie Monster’ is largely hailed as one of the worst fights in MMA history.

Following her loss up at 125 pounds, there was speculation on what was next for Rose Namajunas. However, it seems that speculation is now over. As reported by MMA Hoje and Combate, ‘Thug Rose’ will be returning to the octagon in March. At UFC Vegas 88, she will face top contender, Amanda Ribas, at flyweight.


Amanda Ribas

Image via @amandaribasufc (photographer not listed)

Rose Namajunas vs. Amanda Ribas added to UFC Vegas 88 in March

For her part, the Brazilian is coming off a knockout win over Luana Pinheiro in November. That was a return to strawweight for Amanda Ribas, who previously experimented down at flyweight as well. Since 2020, the Brazilian has alternated wins and losses and switched her weight class several times.

However, she will now look to score the biggest win of her career in March, against Rose Namajunas. As of now, ‘Thug Rose’, nor Ribas, have confirmed reports about the matchup. However, the former strawweight champion has teased a comeback in recent months. Furthermore, the fight would be a big boost to a largely empty UFC Vegas 88 card as of now.

That event is slated to go down at the UFC Apex, in Las Vegas on March 23rd. As of now, the card only has a few matchups attached, and no main event. While a fight between Rose Namajunas and Amanda Ribas would serve that role perfectly, reports haven’t specified if the flyweight clash will be five rounds.

With the addition of the women’s flyweight bout, here’s how the UFC Vegas 88 card stands as of now:

  • Women’s Bantamweight bout: Montserrat Rendon vs. Darya Zheleznyakova
  • Women’s Strawweight bout: Stephanie Luciano vs. Shauna Bannon
  • Featherweight bout: Luis Pajuelo vs. Fernando Padilla
  • Featherweight bout: Steven Nguyen vs. Jarno Errens
  • Bantamweight bout: Davey Grant vs. Cody Gibson
  • Featherweight bout: Ricardo Ramos vs. Julian Erosa
  • Women’s Flyweight bout: Rose Namajunas vs. Amanda Ribas

What do you make of this fight announcement? Who do you have emerging victorious in this UFC Vegas 88 flyweight clash? Rose Namajunas or Amanda Ribas?


Rose Namajunas UFC