Roxanne Modafferi

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Roxanne Modafferi
Born Roxanne Vincenta Modafferi
(1982-09-24) September 24, 1982 (age 35)
Wilmington, Delaware, United States[1]
Other names The Happy Warrior, Roxy
Residence Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Nationality American
Height 5 ft 7 in (1.70 m)[2]
Weight 125 lb (57 kg; 8.9 st) [2]
Division Flyweight [3]
Reach 69 in (175 cm)[2]
Fighting out of Las Vegas, Nevada
Team Syndicate MMA
Rank Brown belt in Judo[4]
Brown belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu[4]
Years active 2003–present (MMA)
Mixed martial arts record
Total 36
Wins 22
By knockout 4
By submission 5
By decision 13
Losses 14
By knockout 1
By submission 3
By decision 10
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Roxanne Vincenta Modafferi (born September 24, 1982)[5] is an American mixed martial artist currently signed to the UFC. Though she currently fights in the Flyweight division, she had fought in multiple weight classes in her career. As of July 26, 2018, she is #5 in the official UFC flyweight rankings.[6]


Modafferi's training began in taekwondo as a teenager in Pennsylvania, moving on to Mark Lawler's Kenpō Karate two years later. She then began attending the Dalton Judo Club in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. Her description of that experience was: "I thought I was all cool doing Karate, like the movie stars, but then in Judo I learned what it was like to fly." She trained for three years to gain a brown belt in the style, and then graduated from high school. Before leaving home to study at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, a fellow brown belt brought Modafferi to a Royce Gracie Brazilian Jiu Jitsu association in Adams, Massachusetts, where she trained intensively for three months.

Modafferi majored in Japanese Language and Literature with a minor in Linguistics at the University of Massachusetts. While at college, she found the Amherst Athletic club, where New England Submission Fighting is based. In addition, she trained at another Royce Gracie association in Hartford, Connecticut, for about a year (necessitating a weekly two-hour round trip), also investigating Jeremy Libiszewski's School of Self-Defence in Wilbraham, Massachusetts. During summer vacations in Boston, she trained at Joao Amaral's New England BJJ club, now associated with Brazilian Top Team. Modafferi says, "Those guys are tough as concrete is hard, and beat my weaknesses out of me when they found them." To work on her striking, she also attended the Sityodtong Muay Thai Academy's North American branch in Somerville, Massachusetts, run by Kru Mark DellaGrotte.

She is now a member of the Syndicate MMA team.

Mixed martial arts career[edit]

International career[edit]

Modafferi spent September 2003 to June 2004, her junior year, in Tokyo, Japan. This enabled her to compete in a number of NHB and BJJ competitions. She achieved a 3-0 mixed martial arts record in the Smackgirl promotion and defeated Jennifer Howe (who, at that time, was considered to be the best female fighter in the United States, if not the world) in HOOKnSHOOT.

In Japan, she trained at the Cross Point club in Kichijouji, which taught both Muay Thai and BJJ. She hopes to one day write a book about her experiences during that time, having already contributed several articles on the topic.[citation needed] After graduating in May 2005, she secured a position with Berlitz, teaching English in Japan and arriving for the second time in July 2005.

Modafferi earned a win by split decision against Cassandra Rivers-Blasso at Fatal Femmes Fighting on February 2, 2007. She became K-GRACE Women's Open-Weight Tournament Champion on May 27, 2007 by defeating Hee Jin Lee, Megumi Yabushita and Marloes Coenen.[7]

Roxanne defended her FFF title against Vanessa Porto at FFF 4 – Call of the Wild on April 3, 2008. She won the fight by TKO in the third round.[8]

She signed a contract with the American Fight League[9] and was scheduled to face Tara LaRosa at the AFL's November event,[10] but fought instead at the debut Valkyrie event in Japan after the AFL's plans stalled.


Modafferi moved up a weight class and made her long-awaited Strikeforce debut in a rematch with Marloes Coenen on November 7, 2009 at Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Rogers,[11] but lost the fight by armbar in the first round.[12]

Independent promotions[edit]

On January 30, 2010, Modafferi submitted Molly Helsel in the second round at King of the Cage: Toryumon in Okinawa, Japan.[13]

Modafferi rematched Tara LaRosa at Moosin: God of Martial Arts on May 21, 2010. Strikeforce provided official permission for Modafferi to compete on the card.[14] Modafferi won the fight by Split Decision.[15]

Strikeforce return[edit]

Modafferi returned to Strikeforce to challenge Sarah Kaufman at Strikeforce Challengers: del Rosario vs. Mahe on July 23, 2010.[16] She lost the fight via knockout due to a slam in the third round.[17]

Modafferi was released by Strikeforce on November 12, 2010 after losing both her fights with the promotion.[18] She was scheduled to face Hitomi Akano at World Victory Road Presents: Soul of Fight on December 30, 2010,[19] but the fight was cancelled after Modafferi suffered a stomach illness and was unable to compete.[20][21]

International return[edit]

Modafferi faced Rosi Sexton at Cage Warriors Fighting Championship 40 on February 26, 2011. The fight was Modafferi's debut at 125 pounds.[22] She was defeated by Unanimous Decision.[23]

Modafferi then faced Hitomi Akano in a bout rescheduled for Jewels 15th Ring on July 9, 2011.[24] She was defeated by Unanimous Decision.[25]

Modafferi was scheduled to face Aisling Daly at BlackEye Promotions 5 on October 1, 2011 in Fletcher, North Carolina.[26] However, Daly was forced to withdraw from the card and Modafferi faced Barb Honchak instead.[27] She was defeated by submission due to a rear-naked choke in the third round.[28]

On February 10, 2012, it was announced that Modafferi would face Takayo Hashi at Jewels 18th Ring on March 3 in Tokyo.[29] She was defeated by unanimous decision.[30]

Modafferi was set to face Shizuka Sugiyama at Jewels 22nd Ring on December 15, 2012.[31] However, she suffered a neck injury in training and withdrew from the fight on December 13.[32]

The Ultimate Fighter 18[edit]

In August 2013, it was announced that Modafferi was one of the fighters selected to be on The Ultimate Fighter: Team Rousey vs. Team Tate.[33] In the elimination fight to get into the TUF house, Modafferi faced Valérie Létourneau and won via a rear-naked choke submission in the first round. She later lost her first tournament fight to Jessica Rakoczy.

Ultimate Fighting Championship[edit]

In November 2013, it was announced that Modafferi would make her official UFC debut against fellow TUF 18 alumni Raquel Pennington on November 30, 2013 at The Ultimate Fighter 18 Finale.[34] She lost the fight via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28).

Invicta FC[edit]

Modafferi met Tara LaRosa for the third time at Invicta FC 8 on Saturday, September 6, 2014. The event was the first Invicta event to air exclusively on UFC Fight Pass. Modafferi won the fight via unanimous decision, ending her 6 fight losing streak with her first win in four years. She followed this up with a split decision win over Andrea Lee at Invicta FC 10 on Friday, December 5, 2014.

Modafferi faced Vanessa Porto at Invicta FC 12 on Friday, April 24, 2015 and lost the fight via unanimous decision. Modafferi faced Mariana Morais at Invicta FC 14 on Saturday, September 12, 2015, and won via TKO stoppage in the third round. Modafferi brought her Invicta FC record to 4-1 with a win over DeAnna Bennett in March 2016 at Invicta FC 16. She was later announced as challenging Jennifer Maia for the Invicta FC flyweight championship at Invicta FC 19 on September 23, 2016. The fight will be Modafferi's first title fight in the Invicta FC promotion.[35]

The Ultimate Fighter 26[edit]

In August 2017, it was announced that Modafferi would be one of the fighters featured on The Ultimate Fighter 26, where the process to crown the UFC's inaugural 125-pound women's champion will take place.[36]

In the opening round, Modafferi faced Shana Dobson and won by TKO due to punches in the first round, allowing her to move on to the next stage of the competition. In the quarterfinals, Modafferi faced Emily Whitmire and won the fight via technical kockout in round one.[37] In the semifinals, Modafferi faced Sijara Eubanks and she lost the via unanimous decision after three rounds.[38]

UFC return[edit]

Modafferi was scheduled to face fellow semi-finalist Barb Honchak on December 1, 2017 at The Ultimate Fighter 26 Finale.[39] However, on the day of the weigh in, Sijara Eubanks was pulled from the fight for kidney failure and was replaced by Modafferi to face Nicco Montaño for the Flyweight title.[40][41] She lost the fight via unanimous decision.[42] The fight earned her the Fight of the Night bonus.[43]

The rematch between Modafferi and Barb Honchak was rescheduled to take place July 6, 2018 at UFC TUF 27 Finale.[44] Modafferi won the fight via technical knockout in round two.[45]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Mixed martial arts[edit]

Submission grappling[edit]

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 22–14 Barb Honchak TKO (elbows) The Ultimate Fighter: Undefeated Finale July 6, 2018 2 3:32 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Loss 21–14 Nicco Montaño Decision (unanimous) The Ultimate Fighter: A New World Champion Finale December 1, 2017 5 5:00 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States For the inaugural UFC Women's Flyweight Championship. Fight of the Night.
Win 21–13 Sarah D'Alelio TKO (elbows) Invicta FC 23: Porto vs. Niedźwiedź May 20, 2017 3 1:37 Kansas City, Missouri, United States
Win 20–13 Priscila de Souza Submission (armbar) Fusion Fight League: Ladies Fight Night April 1, 2017 2 4:52 Billings, Montana, United States Won the FFL Flyweight Championship.
Loss 19–13 Jennifer Maia Decision (split) Invicta FC 19: Maia vs. Modafferi September 23, 2016 5 5:00 Kansas City, Missouri, United States For the Invicta FC Flyweight Championship. Fight of the Night.
Win 19–12 DeAnna Bennett Decision (split) Invicta FC 16: Hamasaki vs. Brown March 11, 2016 3 5:00 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 18–12 Mariana Morais TKO (punches) Invicta FC 14: Evinger vs. Kianzad September 12, 2015 3 4:40 Kansas City, Missouri, United States
Loss 17–12 Vanessa Porto Decision (unanimous) Invicta FC 12: Kankaanpää vs. Souza April 24, 2015 3 5:00 Kansas City, Missouri, United States
Win 17–11 Andrea Lee Decision (split) Invicta FC 10: Waterson vs. Tiburcio December 5, 2014 3 5:00 Houston, Texas, United States
Win 16–11 Tara LaRosa Decision (unanimous) Invicta FC 8: Waterson vs. Tamada September 6, 2014 3 5:00 Kansas City, Missouri, United States
Loss 15–11 Raquel Pennington Decision (unanimous) The Ultimate Fighter: Team Rousey vs. Team Tate Finale November 30, 2013 3 5:00 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Bantamweight bout.
Loss 15–10 Takayo Hashi Decision (unanimous) Jewels 18th Ring March 3, 2012 2 5:00 Koto, Japan Catchweight (127 lbs) bout.
Loss 15–9 Barb Honchak Submission (rear-naked choke) BEP 5: Breast Cancer Beatdown October 1, 2011 3 1:46 Fletcher, North Carolina, United States
Loss 15–8 Hitomi Akano Decision (unanimous) Jewels 15th Ring July 9, 2011 2 5:00 Kabukicho, Japan Bantamweight bout.
Loss 15–7 Rosi Sexton Decision (unanimous) Cage Warriors: 40 February 26, 2011 3 5:00 North London, England Flyweight debut.
Loss 15–6 Sarah Kaufman KO (slam) Strikeforce Challengers: del Rosario vs. Mahe July 23, 2010 3 4:45 Everett, Washington, United States For the Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Championship.
Win 15–5 Tara LaRosa Decision (split) Moosin: God of Martial Arts May 21, 2010 3 5:00 Worcester, Massachusetts, United States Catchweight (130 lbs) bout.
Win 14–5 Molly Helsel Submission (rear-naked choke) KOTC: Toryumon January 30, 2010 2 3:18 Okinawa, Japan
Loss 13–5 Marloes Coenen Submission (armbar) Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Rogers November 7, 2009 1 1:05 Hoffman Estates, Illinois, United States Featherweight bout.
Win 13–4 Chisa Yonezawa Decision (unanimous) Valkyrie 01 November 8, 2008 2 3:00 Tokyo, Japan Bantamweight bout.
Win 12–4 Vanessa Porto TKO (knees) Fatal Femmes Fighting 4: Call of the Wild April 3, 2008 3 0:53 Los Angeles, California, United States Defended the FFF Lightweight Championship.
Win 11–4 Marloes Coenen Decision (split) K-GRACE 1 May 27, 2007 2 3:00 Tokyo, Japan K-GRACE Women's Openweight Tournament Final.
Win 10–4 Megumi Yabushita Decision (unanimous) K-GRACE 1 May 27, 2007 2 3:00 Tokyo, Japan K-GRACE Women's Openweight Tournament Semifinal.
Win 9–4 Hee Jin Lee Submission (armbar) K-GRACE 1 May 27, 2007 1 2:56 Tokyo, Japan K-GRACE Women's Openweight Tournament Quarterfinal.
Win 8–4 Cassandra Rivers-Blasso Decision (split) Fatal Femmes Fighting 1: Asian Invasion January 17, 2007 5 2:00 Los Angeles, California, United States Won the FFF Lightweight Championship.
Loss 7–4 Shayna Baszler Submission (hammerlock) MARS: BodogFIGHT October 4, 2006 1 1:08 Tokyo, Japan
Win 7–3 Megumi Yabushita Decision (unanimous) G-Shooto: G-Shooto 05 May 6, 2006 2 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Loss 6–3 Tara LaRosa Decision (unanimous) Mix Fighting Championships: Boardwalk Blitz March 4, 2006 3 5:00 Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States
Loss 6–2 Laura D'Auguste Decision (unanimous) Ring of Combat 8 March 19, 2005 3 5:00 Asbury Park, New Jersey, United States For the ROC Women's Welterweight (147 lbs) Championship.
Win 6–1 Jennifer Howe Submission (triangle choke) International Fighting Championships: Eve of Destruction March 5, 2005 3 1:47 Salt Lake City, Utah, United States Won the IFC Women's Middleweight Championship. Won the ISKA Women's World Middleweight Championship.
Loss 5–1 Megumi Yabushita Decision (unanimous) Smackgirl: World ReMix 2004 December 19, 2004 2 5:00 Shizuoka, Japan Smackgirl World ReMix 2004 Openweight Tournament Semifinal.
Win 5–0 Ana Carolina Decision (unanimous) Smackgirl: World ReMix 2004 December 19, 2004 2 5:00 Shizuoka, Japan Smackgirl World ReMix 2004 Openweight Tournament Quarterfinal.
Win 4–0 Jennifer Howe Decision (unanimous) HOOKnSHOOT: Evolution November 6, 2004 3 5:00 Evansville, Indiana, United States
Win 3–0 Natsuko Kikukawa Decision (unanimous) Smackgirl: F8 May 16, 2004 3 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Win 2–0 Keiko Tamai Decision (unanimous) Greatest Common Multiple: Cross Section 1 April 18, 2004 2 5:00 Japan
Win 1–0 Hikaru Shinohara Submission (armbar) Smackgirl: Third Season 7 November 10, 2003 1 1:58 Tokyo, Japan

Mixed martial arts exhibition record[edit]

Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Loss 3-2 Sijara Eubanks Decision (unanimous) The Ultimate Fighter: A New World Champion November 29, 2017 (air date) 3 5:00 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States TUF 26 Semi-final round
Win 3-1 Emily Whitmire TKO (elbows) The Ultimate Fighter: A New World Champion November 8, 2017 (air date) 1 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States TUF 26 Quarter-final round
Win 2-1 Shana Dobson TKO (punches) The Ultimate Fighter: A New World Champion August 30, 2017 (air date) 1 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States TUF 26 preliminary round
Loss 1-1 Jessica Rakoczy TKO (slam and punches) The Ultimate Fighter: Team Rousey vs. Team Tate September 25, 2013 (air date) 2 2:31 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States TUF 18 preliminary round
Win 1–0 Valérie Létourneau Submission (rear-naked choke) The Ultimate Fighter: Team Rousey vs. Team Tate September 4, 2013 (air date) 1 3:36 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States TUF 18 elimination round

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "FeMMA: Roxanne Modafferi Fighting in the East". 2009-05-08. Archived from the original on 2009-05-17. Retrieved 2009-05-08. 
  2. ^ a b c "Roxanne Modafferi Awakening Profile". Retrieved 2017-03-11. 
  3. ^ "The 15 New Invicta Signees – Part 3". Retrieved 2017-03-11. 
  4. ^ a b "Roxanne Modafferi - Official UFC Fighter Profile". Retrieved December 1, 2017. 
  5. ^ "STATE OF NEVADA - TUF-SEASON-18.pdf" (PDF). Retrieved 2016-08-20. 
  6. ^ "Fighter Rankings | UFC ®". UFC. Retrieved 2018-07-26. 
  7. ^ "Modafferi Wins Big in K-Grace". 2007-05-27. Retrieved 2010-05-01. 
  8. ^ "Top Female Fighters Star in So Cal". 2008-04-04. Retrieved 2010-02-12. 
  9. ^ "American Fight League inks Julie Kedzie, Roxanne Modafferi and Emily Thompson"., by John Morgan. 2008-08-22. Archived from the original on 2008-08-26. Retrieved 2008-08-22. 
  10. ^ "ROXY FIGHT ALERT!". 2008-08-25. Archived from the original on 2008-08-28. Retrieved 2008-08-26. 
  11. ^ "Modafferi To Rematch Coenen In Strikeforce". Retrieved 2009-10-29. 
  12. ^ "'Fedor vs. Rogers' Results and Live Play-by-Play". 2009-11-07. Retrieved 2010-04-12. 
  13. ^ "Weekend Rundown: Yamaguchi Captures KOTC Crown". 2010-02-01. Retrieved 2010-05-01. 
  14. ^ "Modafferi vs LaRosa Rematch Planned For Moosin". Retrieved 2010-04-08. 
  15. ^ "Modafferi Avenges Loss, Upsets LaRosa At Moosin". Retrieved 2010-05-21. 
  16. ^ "Kaufman vs Modafferi At Strikeforce Challengers 9". Retrieved 2010-06-10. 
  17. ^ "KAUFMAN SLAMS MODAFFERI, COMMANDING RESPECT". 2010-07-24. Retrieved 2010-07-24. 
  18. ^ "Roxanne Modafferi Released by Strikeforce". 2010-11-14. Retrieved 2010-11-14. 
  19. ^ "Blanco-Park, Kanehara-Maeda Booked for 'Soul of Fight'". 2010-12-17. Retrieved 2010-12-28. 
  20. ^ "Sengoku Results & Live Play-By-Play". Retrieved 2010-12-30. 
  21. ^ "Fujii, Nakai Victorious At SRC; Akano vs Modafferi Scrapped". Retrieved 2010-12-30. 
  22. ^ "Rosi Sexton vs Roxanne Modafferi Set For Cage Warriors 40". 2010-12-20. Retrieved 2010-12-28. 
  23. ^ "Rosi Sexton Edges Roxanne Modafferi At Cage Warriors 40". Retrieved 2011-02-26. 
  24. ^ "Three Big Fights Announced For Jewels: "15th Ring" Card". 2011-06-06. Retrieved 2011-07-11. 
  25. ^ "Jewels: "15th Ring" Live Play-By-Play & Results". 2011-07-09. Retrieved 2011-07-11. 
  26. ^ "Roxanne Modafferi vs Aisling Daly Targeted For BlackEye 5". 2011-07-20. Retrieved 2011-07-22. 
  27. ^ "Six Women's Bouts Now Set For BlackEye Promotions 5". 2011-08-08. Retrieved 2011-08-12. 
  28. ^ "BlackEye Promotions 5 Live Play-By-Play & Results". 2011-10-01. Retrieved 2011-10-01. 
  29. ^ "Roxanne Modafferi vs Takayo Hashi Set For Jewels: 18th Ring". 2012-02-10. Retrieved 2012-02-12. 
  30. ^ "Jewels: "18th Ring" Live Play-By-Play & Results". 2012-03-03. Retrieved 2012-03-03. 
  31. ^ "Shizuka Sugiyama Faces Roxanne Modafferi At Jewels: 22nd Ring". 2012-11-16. Retrieved 2012-11-17. 
  32. ^ "Roxanne Modafferi Injured, Out Of Jewels: "22nd Ring" Bout". 2012-12-13. Retrieved 2012-12-13. 
  33. ^ Staff (2013-08-15). "'Ultimate Fighter' Season 18 cast revealed, including LaRosa, Baszler, Modafferi". Retrieved 2013-08-23. 
  34. ^ Staff (November 25, 2013). "Saturday's TUF 18 Finale to feature all female cast members except Baszler and Moras". Retrieved November 30, 2013. 
  35. ^ Rob Tatum (August 26, 2016). "Invicta FC 19 Adds Six More Bouts". Retrieved September 19, 2016. 
  36. ^ "'The Ultimate Fighter 26' cast revealed: Who's vying to become 1st UFC women's flyweight champ?". MMAjunkie. 2017-08-06. Retrieved 2017-11-30. 
  37. ^ "Episode No. 9 recap: 'The Ultimate Fighter 26: A New World Champion'". MMAjunkie. 2017-11-09. Retrieved 2017-11-30. 
  38. ^ "Episode No. 12 (season finale) recap: 'The Ultimate Fighter 26: A New World Champion'". MMAjunkie. 2017-11-30. Retrieved 2017-11-30. 
  39. ^ "Tournament final/inaugural title fight set as part of Friday's official TUF 26 Finale lineup". MMAjunkie. 2017-11-30. Retrieved 2017-11-30. 
  40. ^ "Roxanne Modafferi replaces Sijara Eubanks in TUF 26 Finale's inaugural title fight". MMAjunkie. 2017-11-30. Retrieved 2017-11-30. 
  41. ^ "'TUF 26' finalist Sijara Eubanks breaks silence on weight miss that scrapped UFC title shot". MMAjunkie. 2017-11-30. Retrieved 2017-11-30. 
  42. ^ "TUF 26 Finale results: Nicco Montano outlasts courageous Roxanne Modafferi to claim UFC title". MMAjunkie. 2017-12-02. Retrieved 2017-12-02. 
  43. ^ Dan Hiergesell (2017-12-02). "TUF 26 Finale bonuses: Brett Johns' calf slicer submission, Gerald Meerschaert's body kick TKO lead the way". Retrieved 2017-12-02. 
  44. ^ "Roxanne Modafferi vs. Barb Honchak rebooked for TUF 27 Finale". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 2018-04-20. 
  45. ^ "TUF 27 Finale results: Roxanne Modafferi TKOs Barb Honchak for long-awaited UFC win". MMAjunkie. 2018-07-07. Retrieved 2018-07-07. 
  46. ^ "Awakening WMMA Awards 2014". Awakening Fighters. 

External links[edit]