UFC women's bantamweight title contender Miesha Tate is the latest mixed martial artist to be featured in the special edition ESPN The Magazine's Body Issue, and her photo has been released by the New York Daily News.
The image shot by Ben Watts for ESPN The Magazine was taken on a private beach in Malibu, California.
Tate joins her next opponent, UFC women's bantamweight women's champion Ronda Rousey, as the second women's fighter from the promotion to be featured in the famous issue.
Rousey was a featured athlete last year and ended up on one of the most popular covers released for the last version of the Body Issue.
In an interview with the New York Daily News about posing for the issue, Tate said it all came down to the perception that she can't be a fighter and be feminine and beautiful as well.
“One of the biggest common misperceptions about women’s mixed martial arts is that we’re not feminine,” Tate stated. “So for me, it’s important to show that women in this sport are comfortable about their bodies, that we’re pretty and carry ourselves as women, and we can also turn it up a notch in the cage.”
Tate joins Rousey as well as UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones, who has also appeared in the ESPN Body issue in the past. Former Strikeforce and Elite XC fighter Gina Carano was also featured in the issue back in 2009.
Tate has been on a bit of a whirlwind over the last few months since making her UFC debut in April. In that fight to crown the new No. 1 contender, Tate lost by TKO to Cat Zingano, while also losing her shot to coach against Rousey on the newest edition of The Ultimate Fighter.
Unfortunately just before filming began, Zingano suffered a serious knee injury, putting her under the doctor's scalpel and on the shelf for several months, scrapping her shot at Rousey and The Ultimate Fighter coaching job.
So in her place, Tate was asked to fill in as coach and as the new contender to face Rousey in December in the main event for UFC 168.
Tate and Rousey have a long standing feud from their days in Strikeforce. Rousey won the women's bantamweight title from Tate in 2012, and now the two fighters will do it all over again this year.
For now, with The Ultimate Fighter season wrapped, Tate can focus on her training for Rousey and enjoying the attention she will surely receive for her turn in the newest ESPN Body issue.
Damon Martin is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report