UFC 193

Rousey x Holm - Picks & Predictions

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PICK vs. OPPONENT

Rousey x Holm
Joanna Champion x Letourneau
Hunt x Silva
Hall x Whittaker
Struve x Rosholt
Matthews x Arreola
Noke x Sobotta
Villante x Perosh
Martinez x Vaculik
Kelly x Montgomery
Benoit x Nguyen

PARLAY: $20

Hunt(-250)
Struve (-112)
Noke (+149)

to win $112

PREDICTIONS

Rousey x Holm

Aye yi yi. This is a great matchup, but I think it looks better on paper than it will in the octagon. Regardless of how good Rousey is, it would be foolish to think that Holm doesn’t belong in there. This won’t be the James Toney/Randy Couture of days past – Holm is fantastic at keeping distance and has used her movement to dominate throughout her storied boxing career. Holly is by no means a power hitter, but has found success with kicks in past MMA fights and her 16 boxing titles prove she’s no slouch with her hands, either. She rarely finds herself in a bad position and should be able to last longer than a few seconds against the champ. Holm has also been training with Jon Jones, so who knows what we’re in for. Oblique kicks, maybe? Circle and run? The usual? I’m just hoping we get more than one round of action.

There’s nothing more to say about Ronda Rousey until she shows us a chink in her armor. Without a counter to her judo, her opponents are sitting ducks. As soon as Rousey traps them in a clinch, they’ll be staring at the ceiling. The goal for any of her opponents, I would think, would be to stay away from the champ and try to pepper her with shots en route to a decision. The safer route is to criticize them from your own couch at home. If Rousey can get this down to the mat, it won’t be far from over. It’s a joy to watch someone as talented as Ronda Rousey and it will be exciting to see Holly Holm give it her all on saturday.

Joanna Champion x Letourneau

Joanna was a world-class female muay thai fighter and has looked every bit of unstoppable in her last two fights. Transitioning to MMA is tough and the champ’s weakness seemed to be wrestling early on, but her absolute destruction of Carla Esparza, who is easily the best female wrestler at strawweight, has given Joanna the green light to clear out the rest of the division. While it’s no fun to spell, it’s always fun to watch Jędrzejczyk whip her limbs at other 115lbers, leaving them in a blood-splattered heap.

This time the champ will be taking on a fellow kickboxer in Valerie Letourneau. Letourneau almost made it on the first female version of TUF, but lost to crafty vet and power-nerd Roxanne Modafferi. That doesn’t bode well for her chances. Since then, Letourneau has won four straight with three UFC bouts over middling competition. At least we get to see a striker go up against Joanna, but prepare for another gory mess. Letourneau is going to take out her knife, Joanna is going to take out her bigger knife, and Paul Hogan, sitting quietly in the crowd, will shed a tear.