Murphy came from behind at the Ameristar Casino in Kansas City, Missouri to become the first Invicta FC bantamweight titleholder.
Nakamoto used her reach and striking advantage to keep Murphy on the outside in the opening round. She drove leg kicks into the lead leg of Murphy and defended Murphy’s takedown attempts in the second frame.
Murphy came back in the third round, closing the distance and taking the fight to the ground. From there, she landed elbows and changed the momentum of the fight.
Following the third round, Natakmoto complained of a knee injury to her corner suffered while trying to defend a takedown. She came out for the forth frame but 23-seconds later the knee gave out and she was unable to continue.
“Might just have to start calling me Lauren “Comeback” Murphy because I know that first round really wasn’t going my way,” said Murphy following the win. “When I came back in the third, I was just like I want to do this for the next couple of rounds and pull out the win, maybe get the TKO.”
“I knew she was tired, but I didn’t know she was that injured,” said Murphy about Nakamoto’s injury.
No fighter wants to win due to an injury, and Murphy offered to give Nakamoto a rematch at a later date.
“I think she’s an amazing fighter, and I’ve never been hit that hard in the ring. If she wants a rematch, I’d be totally down to give it to her because I don’t think anyone wanted to see it end that way. I didn’t want to get the victory this way, but I’m going to go home tonight the champion,” she said.
The win improves Murphy’s undefeated record to 8-0 and she plans to hold on to the title for a long time.
“I’m on a quest to be one of the best in the world and I’m going to keep coming in here and keep proving that for as long as I have to and as long as you guys will have me,” said the new titleholder.