No female fighter has more UFC submission wins than Gillian Robertson.
The 28-year-old finisher has secured a submission win in half of her 14 UFC fights to date, and after spending over five years chasing flyweight contention, she’s bringing her jiu jitsu prowess to the action-packed strawweight division.
“The Savage” has an opportunity to break into the 115-pound rankings this weekend when she faces Tabatha Ricci at UFC Fight Night: Emmett vs Topuria.
Let’s take a look back at each of Robertson’s submission wins as we wait for her to make the walk on Saturday at VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville.
Gillian Robertson vs Emily Whitmire
The Ultimate Fighter: A New World Champion Finale - Dec 1, 2017
Although things didn’t work out for Robertson on TUF 26, UFC brought the then-22-year-old back for the finale. She didn’t disappoint.
The fight went to the canvas quickly and Robertson transitioned into an armbar seemingly out of nowhere that forced Whitmire to tap immediately. It was a lightning fast armbar that was a preview of things to come.
Gillian Robertson vs Molly McCann
UFC Fight Night: Thompson vs Till - May 27, 2018
Fighting someone in their hometown isn’t an easy task, but Robertson was more than up to the challenge of facing Molly McCann in Liverpool.
Robertson was dominant and it only felt like a matter of time until she was going to lock in a submission. In the second round, she secured a deep rear naked choke that would have forced most fighters to tap – not McCann. “Meatball” Molly decided to go out on her shield.
Gillian Robertson vs Veronica Hardy
UFC Fight Night: Blachowicz vs Santos – Feb 23, 2019
“Swimming against the tide.”
That’s how UFC commentator John Gooden described Robertson’s performance against Veronica Hardy. But no matter what was happening in the fight, Robertson never abandoned her gameplan.
She waited for Hardy to make a mistake and as soon as she did, she capitalized. In round two Robertson reversed Hardy on the canvas to land in full mount. When Hardy gave up her back, Robertson wasted no time and sunk in the rear naked choke.
Gillian Robertson vs Cortney Casey
UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs Volkov – June 20, 2020
This was the type of fight where Gillian Robertson thrives.
Most of this fight was spent on the canvas, with the two engaging in scrambles and submission attempts. Robertson’s longtime coach Din Thomas told her she was up heading into the third round but to “try to finish it” and she did just that.
With less than 30 seconds remaining Robertson was able to sneak a rear naked choke in and force Casey to tap.
Gillian Robertson vs Priscila Cachoeira
UFC 269 – Dec 11, 2021
For the first time in her career, Robertson entered the Octagon at UFC 269 on a two-fight skid. She came in motivated to get back to her winning ways and it was evident that she was seeking a quick finish against Priscila Cachoeira.
Robertson was able to get Cachoeira to the canvas at about the halfway mark of round one. She threatened with a kimura before spending some time landing some great ground-and-pound.
At the end of the round, Cachoeira tried to stand up, which allowed Robertson to get her back. She locked in the rear naked choke and put an end to the fight with one second remaining in the opening frame.
Gillian Robertson vs Mariya Agapova
UFC Fight Night: Sandhagen vs Song – Sept 17, 2022
We’ve seen Gillian Robertson persevere time and time again.
Robertson’s willingness to walk through fire in order to get the fight to the ground was on full display against Mariya Agapova. The exciting striker had an excellent first round, landing significant strikes and preventing Robertson from setting up submission attempts. At the end of the first, Agapova almost slipped right into an arm triangle but was saved by the bell.
In the second round, Agapova made that mistake that Robertson had been waiting for. As Agapova worked her way back up to her knees she gave up her back and Robertson pounced on the rear naked choke.
Agapova fought the choke and essentially tried to just tough it out, but the submission was too deep, and she went out on the canvas.
Gillian Robertson vs Piera Rodriguez
UFC Fight Night: Holloway vs Allen – April 15, 2023
“The Savage” followed up her win over Agapova with a switch down to the strawweight division and an excellent performance against Piera Rodriguez at UFC Kansas City.
Robertson started off with a solid first round as she got Rodriguez to the canvas and was able to control her for the better half of the round.
Robertson went right back to the well to start off the second, landing a takedown in the first ten seconds. She transitioned between positions, landing ground-and-pound elbows that opened Rodriguez up. She continued landing big strikes until she transitioned to an armbar after nearly four full minutes of softening Rodriguez up.
It was unclear if Rodriguez tapped but referee Keith Peterson called an end to the fight to protect the fighter. Even though the ending came with controversy, it was a brilliant performance from Robertson.
UFC Fight Night: Emmett vs Topuria took place live from the Vystar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida on June 24, 2023. See the Final Results, Official Scorecards and Who Won Bonuses - and relive the action on UFC Fight Pass!