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Feminist ideologies to blame for Invicta FC 7's lack of buzz?

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According to a Nov. 4 tweet from Invicta FC, the promotion is set to unveil a new website and merchandise in anticipation of Invicta FC 7.

"The boss mentioned something about a new website and some new Invicta merchandise. What does everyone think about that?" the promotion tweeted out to its legion of Twitter followers.

The announcement, which Invicta FC boss Shannon Knapp reposted on her Facebook page, might help build a buzz for an event that is otherwise lacking in hype.

Invicta FC 7 is a great card on paper, with three world title fights including a main event showdown between reigning flyweight champion Barb Honchak (8-2) of Bettendorf, Iowa and three-time “Fight of the Night” winner Leslie “The Peacemaker” Smith (6-3-1) of Pleasanton, Calif.

Invicta FC 7 also features Carla “Cookie Monster” Esparza (9-2) putting her strawweight (115 pounds) championship on the line against surging, undefeated superstar Claudia Gadelha (11-0) of Mossoro, Rio Grande Do Norte Brazil, and hard-hitting KO artist Lauren Murphy (7-0) of Anchorage, Alaska battling fellow unbeaten star Miriam Nakamoto (2-0, 1 NC) of Dublin, Calif.

In other main card action, Felice “Lil’ Bulldog” Herrig (9-4) of Buffalo Grove, Illin. will make her highly-anticipated Invicta FC debut and put a four-fight win streak on the line in a strawweight matchup opposite unbeaten, fast-rising star Tecia “The Tiny Tornado” Torres (3-0) of Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

Why There's Little Hype Surrounding Invicta FC 7

With so much great talent on the Invicta FC 7 card, there should be a serious buzz around the event. However, with just a month to go before Invicta FC 7 is set to go down, it's clear that there's something missing this time around.

The event is lacking in hype because all 18 fighters on the card have been super classy and respectful, with no dramatic storylines for fight fans to get invested into. While that may sound ridiculous, history dictates that fans buy PPVs that involve fighters who have a real rivalry and embrace a little drama to hype their fights.

Chuck Liddell vs Tito Ortiz, Jon Jones vs Rashad Evans, Tito Ortiz vs Ken Shamrock and Anderson Silva vs Chael Sonnen rank among the top of the charts when it comes to ratings and PPV buys, so it's clear that a little trash talk goes a long way when it comes to selling fights. When it comes to women's MMA, Ronda Rousey vs Miesha Tate is the perfect example of a great rivalry that fans can get behind.

If you're an MMA fighter, the cruel truth of the matter is this: Your fight doesn't matter that much to the casual fan, unless you're one of the handful of stars in the sport.

By the time 2013 is over, the UFC alone will have put on over 400 fights and Bellator will have completed over a dozen free cards. Add to that World Series of Fighting, XFC, Legacy FC and Invicta FC, and you have an overabundance of MMA.

Not Like The Old Days

This isn't 2005 anymore, when it was good enough to just be a fighter and let your fists do the talking inside the cage and not have to worry about anything else.

If you're a fighter who wants to make the most of your earning potential, it's important to figure out a way to build your brand and generate fan interest in your fight.

"If two guys walked outside right now and got into a fight, I'm not going to go out and watch. However, I'm a UFC fan, because I know who's fighting. I know why it's important to them, I know a little about each guy. And the UFC can't do all that on their own," UFC star Chael Sonnen said. "We depend on fighters to tell the story. Why should I want you to win? Or, why should I want you to lose? Most importantly, why should I care about this match?"

The current female fighters are supposed to be an example for the next generation of women in martial arts. It is important they guide the youth in a respectful way. Everything they do is watched, from their talk, dress and approach to the sport.

That all makes perfect sense, but a little competitive heat is actually good for the sport as far as creating a buzz surrounding an event and selling a fight.

Feminism in WMMA

There is a staunch feminist fan base in WMMA that pushes a friendly, humble, respectful, non-sexy female fighter agenda.

"Back then it was like a side show, let's bring the pretty women out there and have them fight and have all the men go frickin' crazy like 'ohhh yeahh yeahh,' so it was more of a side show back then," WMMA advocate Sam Wilson said of the early days of WMMA on Episode One of Gina Begley's radio show, ProWMMA NOW!. "To see it form backstage as opposed to what the fans see and see what the women had to go through to get to where they are, it's like 'wow you know?' It's about time they do get center stage through the cards, Invicta being like one of the elite places because they are there as athletes and fighters as opposed to women and sex symbols and side shows.

"So I'm glad it is where it is and I'm glad some of the promotions are actually seeing the females as athletes and not the side show and not the sexy females out there fighting, ring girl status or whatever you want to call it. So yeah I do enjoy seeing that part of it. Promotions still have to grow and accept that these are women athletes first, think your mom, your daughter, your aunt, your sister or whatever. To think they are up there as sex symbols and have the guys go 'oh yeah' and what's going through their minds as opposed to seeing them as athletes, so there's still a little bit of growth needs for that as opposed to being the sexier side of female MMA and seeing them as athletes, female athletes."

Wilson makes some fine points, but powerful WMMA advocates like her are part of the core group that is leading the way in pushing female fighters to have a humble, respectful, non-sexy image.

The fighters are silenced behind the scenes, told to "keep it classy" for the good of the sport. Here's the thing: being classy and respectful is great outside the scope of fighting. But when a bout agreement is signed, then competitive heat is occupationally appropriate.

The staunch feminist fan base in WMMA hopes for female fighters to be good girls, with no smack talk, no rivalries and no sexual imagery to enhance their careers.

That is suppressing the reality of what true fighting is, competitive heat, dealing with emotions in a fight, adapting to a hostile opponent and taking the fighting to a higher more intense level, which translates into a much bigger payday for the fighters.

The staunch feminist fan base in WMMA needs to understand that rivalries, competitive heat, and "looks" are extremely valuable keys to girls making actual successful careers out of fighting, many of whom are still struggling to get by.

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