Invicta FC 27: Kianzad vs. Kaufman Gallery

Invicta FC 27 Felicia Spencer
Felicia Spencer vs Akeela Al-Hammeed Credit: Dave Mandel/Invicta FC

Canada’s Sarah Kaufman came out on top Saturday night at Invicta FC 27, while Vanessa Porto inched closer to another crack at flyweight gold!

Invicta FC kicked off 2018 by booking newly signed free agent pickup Sarah Kaufman into a bantamweight main event with prospect Pannie Kianzad. Kaufman had struggled to get into the cage following her departure from the UFC in 2015, fighting just once under Korea’s Battlefield FC banner. The former Strikeforce bantamweight champion, who told us that she has not been paid for that fight against Jessica-Rose Clark to this day, was simply happy to be competing again, and in a premiere organization no less.

With her eyes on the promotion’s vacant 135lb title, Kaufman had the promising Pannie Kianzad in front of her. The Iranian-Swedish fighter had gone 8-0 to start her career, only to fall on hard times, losing her past two bouts and missing weight for one of them.

Kianzad’s woes continued Saturday night in Kansas City. With Pannie having blown weight for the fight, the three-round main event saw an invigorated Kaufman pushing forward from the get-go. She brought the fight to Kianzad, connecting again and again with a right hand while Kianzad looked to land her counter left. The constant forward pressure of the Canadian had Kianzad on her heels for far too much of the fight, and despite some flashy spinning back-fist attempts, Kianzad simply couldn’t overcome the onslaught. In the end, the judges awarded Kaufman a unanimous decision, with 30-27 on all three scorecards.

With the victory, Kaufman improved to 19–4 (1). Kianzad, meanwhile, has dropped to 8-3, and has not won a fight since July 2015. It’ll be back to the drawing board for her, while Kaufman called for another fight as soon as possible — and a crack at the vacant Invicta FC bantamweight belt.

In the evening’s co-main event, Vanessa Porto proved she was more than a match for promotional newcomer Mariana Morais. Morais, who was entering the bout off a title fight loss to Ariane Lipski in KSW, couldn’t get going, and was quickly submitted by Porto, who looks to be knocking on the door of another title shot against flyweight Queen Jennifer Maia.

For a full recap of the night’s action, check our recap and results from the event here. You can relive the night’s best moments in the gallery below, courtesy of Invicta FC!