Lina Lansberg showed considerable growth Saturday at UFC Stockholm, shoring up her takedown defense in a dominant performance over ex-Invicta champ Tonya Evinger.
Tonya Evinger was the queen of the Invicta bantamweight division, winning the promotion’s title in 2015 against Irene Aldana and defending it three times. Overall, Evinger was 7-0 in the promotion with three submissions and two TKOs (and one no contest). She joined the UFC to challenge Cris Cyborg for the featherweight title, losing by third-round stoppage. “Triple Threat” was unable to rebound in her next fight, losing by first-round TKO at the hands of Aspen Ladd.
Lina Lansberg was Cris Cyborg’s first UFC victim. The Muay Thai specialist signed with the promotion in 2016 with a 6-1 record that contained four stoppages. Of course, she was no match for Cyborg (even at a 140-pound catchweight). Lansberg is 2-2 since then, defeating Gina Mazany and Lucie Pudilova.
Lansberg started on the outside, circling, allowing Evinger to move in with strikes and press her up against the cage. Evinger would grind her opponent into the fence but was unable to make much happen. The sequence would repeat itself after Lansberg broke free, but a short elbow cut open the American. Later in the round, Lansberg would get the bloodied Evinger to the ground, and absolutely unload on the American! Elbow after elbow landed, but Evinger never stopped moving or defending, somehow escaping the round despite her face being a mask of blood.
Round two opened with Lansberg connecting, but it was Evinger getting the fight to the ground, putting Lansberg on her back by the fence. Blood was still flowing from the American, drenching her opponent as well. Evinger took the back, got a hook in, and worked in some punches while looking to lock in a choke. The whole time, Evinger continued to bleed quite profusely.
Lansberg, however, would manage to reverse, moving to half-guard and wailing away on Tonya Evinger, who was trapped against the fence. Evinger attempted to isolate an arm from the bottom, but she was in a nasty spot with little hope of escape. The outpouring of offense from Lansberg greatly shifted the momentum in the round, giving her the frame and big edge in significant strikes.
Evinger again attempted to drive Lansberg into the fence to start round three, but the Swede quickly reversed position. Eventually, Evinger would look for a throw only to have it backfire. Lansberg controlled her opponet’s back, scoring more big strikes with Evinger on her knees. Lansberg would add blow after blow while Evinger tried to control the wrists. Punches became elbows, the ref took a good look, but Evinger rolled to her back, buying some time. Lansberg sat in half-guard, opening up Evinger once again.
That's how you end a round!
— UFC (@ufc) June 1, 2019
Evinger would make it to the final bell, but there was no question that Lansberg had won the fight. A bloody good bout, pun fully intended.
After the fight, an emotional Lansberg called for a rematch with Aspen Ladd, who won their first meeting.
Lina Lansberg de. Tonya Evinger by unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27, 30-26)