The first female featherweight title fight in the history of the UFC is going down February 11 in New York.
Holly Holm vs. Germaine de Randamie
The first featherweight female title fight in UFC history and it doesn’t have Cyborg in it. I don’t care she just popped for a diuretic, this is her title. That aside, we still have a great match up against two world class strikers.
Holly is a former Boxing Champ, UFC bantamweight champ, and first to KO Ronda Rousey. Then she immediately lost her title to Tate and lost her next fight by decision to an elite Muay Thai fighter. Now she has another opportunity to win a belt despite back to back losses.
Germaine is a multiple time world Muay Thai champion and has only faltered to opponents who are going to exploit her ground game. She has a very traditional style of Muay Thai with limited footwork, power strikes, and brutal knees and elbows in the clinch.
An interesting X-factor is Holly’s wrestling and athleticism is good enough to bully Germaine to the ground. That isn’t her bread and butter so it will be interesting to see if she goes for the takedown and how often.
Prediction: Holly by decision
Anderson Silva vs. Derek Brunson
Once considered the great of all time, Father Time has tapped Silva on the shoulder and let him know his best days are behind him. That said, he still has some left in the tank and the passion for going after it so don’t expect a terrible BJ Penn like performance. Anderson is a little more hittable now with slower reaction times. His power and fight IQ are still there meaning a highlight finish can happen at any second.
Derek will need to do WAY better than his first round KO loss to Robert Whittaker in his last outing. Don’t get me wrong, Robert is on a tear after moving up to middleweight. Anderson is bigger, hits just as hard and way more experience.
Prediction: Anderson by KO in the first
Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza vs. Tim Boetsch
Jacare has been getting the short end of the stick when it comes to getting a title shot. Minus a spilled-decision loss to Yoel Romero, Souza has been steamrolling the middleweight division since 2013 with five finishes. Souza was a world class submission artist before a transition into MMA and has developed a good wrestling/striking game to implement those submissions.
Poor Tim, this fight is a style nightmare for him. Going against a strong puncher who can out grapple him without question is a tough one. He loves to beat people he has no business beating, but that is the middleweight division.
Prediction: Souza by submission in the first
Glover Teixeira vs. Jared “The Killa Gorilla” Cannonier
Glover seemed old when he got into the UFC and at 37 years old, we all should be wondering how much left he has to give. Also, only 5 months removed from getting his lights brutally turned off by Anthony Johnson. That is very tough to overlook in this fight.
Skillwise, Glover is a good boxer and slick grappler.
The Killa Gorilla started off his career as a heavyweight until his last fight in the UFC. Light Heavyweight seems like a much better fit for his frame so it will be interesting to see what he can do in the division. This is a huge step up for him and can really shake up the division with a win here.
Predictions: Glover by submission
Dustin “The Diamond” Poirier vs. Jim Miller
This is an odd fight as one guy is on a three-fight win streak while the other is coming off a loss. Still ranked at number 10 in the world, Poirier is 5 years the younger and coming into his prime at 28 years old. He has strong punches and a good sense of what to do to get the finish on the feet with half of his wins by TKO. Now slouch on the ground as well and has been training with American Top Team for some time now. I expect him to be hungry to get back in the win column and let everyone know why he is in the top ten.
Jim Miller keeps on winning despite being 33 years old in new ways. Always known as a legit submission guy, he outclassed Thiago Alves on the feet for three round in his last fight. He is going to have to pull out all of his veteran skills in order to pull out this win.Prediction: Poirier by TKO in the first