Nicdali Rivera-Calanoc announces MMA return

Photo Credit: Esther Lin-Invicta FC

At the risk of sounding like Tom Jones, it’s not unusual for fighters who have retired from the sport to return and one of the most beloved competitors in the 105-pound weight class is making her return.

Nicdali Rivera-Calanoc, formely known as “The Night Queen,” announced her return to mixed martial arts on her Facebook page.

God/Universe thank you for the opportunity you have given me to realize what I really want. I know it’s not going to be easy but my life never has been. Although because I’ve been blessed with Travis Calanoc it has been WORTH it and Happy I’ve decided to fight again it’s one of my passions in life and I’m going to chase my dreams with my partner in crime. Thanks XFL for the opportunity…

Rivera-Calanoc (8-8 MMA) retired back in 2014 shortly after her decision loss to Jodie Esquibel at Invicta FC 9. She began her career back in 2006 and has fought a who’s who of competitors. She turned many heads during the “infamous staredown” with Felice Herrig before their XFO 39 fight. She also made a name for herself during her first run in Invicta Fighting Championships, which included a decision win over Angelica Chavez.

Rivera-Calanoc, who won her first three fights, had her ups and downs during her first MMA run but this comeback gives her a chance to start fresh and climb her way to the top, whether she fights on the regional circuit or returns to Invicta. Heck, we could see her fight in the UFC alongside her friend and former Strikeforce women’s bantamweight champion Miesha “Cupcake” Tate. Combat sports is full of successful comeback stories and Rivera-Calanoc could be another case.

And if you are unfamiliar with Rivera-Calanoc, here is some of her handiwork.

vs. Angelica Chavez


About Al Stover

I graduated from Eastern Washington University with a bachelor's degree in journalism. I currently work as a Staff Reporter for the Cheney Free Press. I have interviewed characters like cage fighters, drag queens and dungeon masters. I like Batman, coffee, MMA and beer.
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