Canadian Jasudavicius earns a UFC contract
With six fights on the docket for this week’s Dana White Contender Series episode, the athletes on Tuesday night’s card had to really impress the UFC president and Jasmine Jasudavicius of St. Catharines, Ont., did just that.
White, who decides which athletes will earn a contract at the end of the event, awarded Lithuanian-Canadian Jasudavicius a contract. She is the first Canadian female to earn a contract on the show.
The opening bout featured Jasudavicius and she came out in dominant fashion, taking down her opponent Julia Polastri and imposing her will, landing big strikes from top position.
From there, the 32-year-old Jasudavicius began to slow down and absorbed some punishment from Polastri in the second round, but was able to come out poised to earn the contract in the third round. That’s where she landed a late takedown and was able to land more big punches to close the bout.
Jasudavicius earned a unanimous decision (29-27, 29-27, 29-27), as well as praise from White, who was sitting cageside.
With five more fights after her own bout, a contract looked like it would be more difficult to come by after particularly impressive performances from Australian Jack Della Maddalena, Russian Albert Duraev and Brazilian Jailton Almeida.
However, at the end of the event, White awarded Jasudavicius a contract.
“The fight turned into an absolute war and I like what I saw. I’m going to give her a shot,” White said when speaking with Laura Sanko.
“I just think all the hard work that I put into it, it’s finally showing and I can finally get in there and go against all of these girls that I’ve been looking up to, now I get to get into the cage with them,” Jasudavicius told Sanko. “I think I have a 10-day suspension or something, but after 10 days, put me on, get me in there. I’m old, I’m not here for a long time, I’m here for a good time.”
In two weeks, Jasudavicius’s Niagara Top Team training partner Aaron Jeffery will look to follow in her footsteps and earn a contract of his own. Jeffery competed on the show two years ago, losing to Brendan Allen, who is on the cusp of becoming a top-15 middleweight.