KHI Management expands its rapidly growing stable of athletes by signing a multi-year agreement to represent Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) standout Miesha "Cupcake" Tate, the UFC's second-ranked female fighter.
KHI Management, LLC, an athlete-representation company owned by NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Kevin Harvick, continues to grow in the world of sports by signing its second fighter in as many years, adding to an impressive roster that already includes No. 4-ranked UFC fighter Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone.
"It's an awesome feeling to be able to sign with KHI Management," stated Tate, a professional mixed martial artist fighter currently ranked second in the UFC women's bantamweight (135 lbs.) division. "I have been keeping my eye on them ever since they started working with Donald Cerrone in the UFC. They have all the capabilities I am looking for in an agency, and I really look forward to what the future will hold both inside and out of the Octagon."
Tate, a former Strikeforce Women's bantamweight champion, is based and trains in Las Vegas. Her legendary rivalry with UFC women's bantamweight champion, Ronda Rousey, is one of the most infamous in UFC history and in today's sports world, credited with bringing women's MMA to the UFC, the sport's premier promotion, and piquing national interest. Tate, 27, made her UFC debut in April 2013, taking on Cat Zingano in The Ultimate Fighter 17 finale, which marked the second women's MMA matchup in the UFC and produced the coach for The Ultimate Fighter 18 reality TV series. In 2013, she was featured in ESPN The Magazine's Body Issue.
Tate joins a list of athletes and celebrities represented by KHI Management that includes Cerrone, NASCAR driver Jeff Burton, PGA Golfer Jason Gore and country music artists Jake Owen and Matt Stillwell.
"What Miesha has been able to do in her MMA career speaks volumes not only for her athleticism but for her marketability," Harvick said. "She is a brand all her own, and she has proven she can captivate an audience and move the needle. With that and the solid foundation of sponsors we have here at KHI, I'm excited about our future together."
Tate is fresh off of a win against No. 7-ranked Liz Carmouche that extended her MMA record to 14-5. She is next scheduled to fight Rin Nakai (16-0-1) on Sept. 20 in Tokyo, Japan.
Tate also gained notoriety in 2013 on the FOX Sports 1 television series, The Ultimate Fighter: Team Rousey vs. Team Tate, a reality show in which eight women and eight men bantamweight fighters lived and trained together as they vied for the "The Ultimate Fighter" title and a six-figure contract with the UFC. Rousey and Tate served as the first-ever female coaches and mentors for the show, which welcomed female fighters to the series and the UFC house for the first time since its inception in 2005. Tate and Rousey's legendary rivalry was showcased throughout the series and garnered national attention.
The Tacoma, Wash., native also won a national grappling championship at the 2008 World Team Trials and a silver medal at the 2008 FILA World Grappling Championship. Her professional MMA debut came in the Hook NShoot Bodog Women's Grand Prix tournament in 2007 in a victory by decision, and she went on to win the 135-pound 2009 Freestyle Cage Fighting women's championship by submission over Liz Carreiro. In 2011, Tate won the Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Championship. In high school, Tate competed in amateur wrestling, winning the Washington state championship in 2005 and the Coach's Award in her senior year as the only female on the team.