UFC 193: Rousey vs Holm predictions
Hardcore fight fans finally get their wish to see UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey (12-0-0) tested against arguably an even more decorated opponent.
Holly Holm (9-0-0) dominated the sport of boxing, turning her focus to mixed martial arts with impressive results. She’s undefeated in nine fights and despite her lack of experience, she learns quickly.
Her kicks are formidable and could be advantageous to keep the dominant Rousey away from a dangerous takedown. And on paper at least, she should have a slight striking edge.
Will Rousey back up her intentions to test her striking with the likes of a former multiple world boxing champion?
Welcome back to The Crossfire.
MMA Crossfire Expert Cassie Wiseman checks in with her thoughts on the main card.
UFC EARLY FIGHT PASS PRELIMS (6:15PM ET/3:35PM PT)
BEN NGUYEN (13-5-0) VS RYAN “BABY FACE” BENOIT (8-3-0)
Wiseman: Neither of these guys has a load of experience in terms of in the UFC. Baby Face has fought Sergio Pettis and won, which isn’t an easy opponent. However, Benoit was able to do it via TKO in the second round. Sure, Sergio doesn’t have the best chin, but he is a very talented fighter. Nguyen is the more aggressive striker, he presses forward more and throws a load. He has power and a good ground game, however, he hasn’t been hit by someone like Benoit before. Benoit also has incredible takedown defense, so when Nguyen is rocked and shoots for a takedown, he won’t be successful. To have power, a ground game, and top notch takedown defense is really the key for Benoit.
Wiseman Prediction: Ryan Benoit via TKO.
JAMES “MOONWALKER” MOONTASRI (8-3-0) VS ANTON ZAFIR
Wiseman: Moontasri seems to be a part of the UFC welcoming party with all the debut fighters he is put up against. However, if we watch Moontasri, he is a guy who likes to counter and unload with knees. His Taekwondo background will certainly challenge Zafri from a distance. Another advantage is that Moontasri has great takedown defense. The problem, Moontasri has been shown to gas out. Zafri will want to really push the pace to wear Moontasri down. However, with the experience Moontasri has in the UFC, I’m giving him the edge.
Wiseman Prediction: James “Moonawlker” Moontasri via unanimous decision.
RICHARD “FILTHY” WALSH (8-4-0) VS STEVEN “THE STEAMROLLA” KENNEDY (22-7-0)
Wiseman: To be honest, I don’t think this is a good match up for Kennedy. Walsh is a slugger with incredible takedown defense. He doesn’t have much of a ground game, so being able to keep things standing is certainly what he knows to do. Kennedy is much slower and throws less which will make this Walsh’s fight. Walsh will have time to think and get things lined up for himself. Kennedy has a truck load of experience, but to stand in front of Walsh, that’s going to be a bad move.
Wiseman Prediction: Richard “Filthy” Walsh via TKO.
DANIEL KELLY (9-1-0) VS STEVE “THE CREEPY WEASEL” MONTGOMERY (8-3-0)
Wiseman: The Creepy Weasel has great power, but he is in for quite the match against the expression-less Kelly. Kelly has power and a dangerous ground game. Kelly can and will dictate where the match takes place, then move in for the kill. Prediction: Kelly via submission.
Wiseman Prediction: Daniel Kelly via submission.
TSN 3 PRELIMS (8PM ET/5PM PT)
RICHIE “VAS” VACULIK (10-4-0) VS DANNY “THE GREMLIN” MARTINEZ (17-7-0)
Wiseman: These guys both have power, but it’s the takedown attempts and submission game of Vaculik that is going to make the difference. Vaculik is more precise and will be able to enforce his game early to use his power, get a takedown, transition to a submission.
Wiseman Prediction: Richie “Vas” Vaculik via submission.
ANTHONY “THE HIPPO” PEROSH (15-8-0) VS GIAN VILLANTE (13-5-0)
Wiseman: Perosh is inconsistent, but faced more UFC fighters than Villante. Villante has power for days and is explosive, versus Perosh who tends to wait and size things up in a counter striker mode more so. However, I see Perosh using his ground game. Villante does have great takedown defence, but when hit with the power of Perosh, then trying to stuff a takedown. That’s different. Perosh is a well rounded fighter and has never lost two in a row. He lost his last fight, and I see this being his opportunity to get back into the win column.
Wiseman Prediction: Anthony Perosh via submission.
KYLE NOKE (20-7-1) VS PETER SOBOTTA (15-4-1)
Wiseman: The UFC experience is really whats going to make a different, especially when it comes to the pressure of 70,000 people. These guys are well-rounded and well-conditioned, but Noke is the more technical fighter. The way he sets up his right will challenge Sobotta. Not to be fooled, Sobotta has KO power too, but the higher level of opponents faced by Noke will have better prepared for various situations. These guys can stuff a takedown and both are dangerous off their backs, but I see this as a striking way going all the way. Prediction: Noke via decision.
JAKE “THE CELTIC KID” MATTHEWS (9-1-0) VS AKBARH “EL GABALLERO” ARREOLA (23-9-1)
Wiseman: Even though Arreola has experience, I see Matthews challenging him. The problems are going to come simply because Arreola is the more aggressive fighter. Matthews likes to think, put his powerful combinations together and set the pace. Arreola throws a load of kicks and is always moving forward. That will test Matthews and force him to the defence right away. If things go to the mat, both of these guys have ground games, but Arreola is better. The way Matthews can beat him is simply to weigh heavy while in Arreola’s guard, high in his guard to prevent him from setting up. However, I think Matthews is going to be thrown off right from the beginning because of the pace and aggressive combinations of Arreola.
Wiseman Prediction: Akbarh “El Gaballero” Arreola via submission.
MAIN CARD (10PM ET/7PM PT)
#14 STEFAN “SKYSCRAPER” STRUVE (30-7-0) VS JARED “THE BIG SHOW” ROSHOLT (13-2-0)
Wiseman: In the heavyweight division, anything can happen. Something that I get disappointed about each time I see Struve fight is the fact that he still doesn’t use his reach. Fighters way shorter than him fight longer than him, which makes no sense at all. He has a great ground game, so if he just pieced together his power, ground game, then added reach, what a threat he would be. Looking at his seven losses, six of them have been by KO/TKO. He is so young, but has so much experience and his noodle has been rocked way too many times. I see Rosholt rushing in with his aggression and taking it to Struve to test his weak chin. It’s what others have done, and it really is the key for anyone going against Struve. You don’t want to stay away from the guy, so you have to get inside the pocket. Rosholt only needs to connect with one shot on that crumbling chin and it’s over.
Wiseman Prediction: Jared “The Big Show” Rosholt via TKO.
#10 URIAH “PRIMETIME” HALL (13-5-0) VS #14 ROBERT WHITTAKER (14-4-0)
Wiseman: This is a fight where Whittaker needs to use his wrestling. He needs to get in there and shoot, shoot, shoot. Hall’s timing, long stance, power, unique combinations, and speed allow him to do incredible things. What he did with Gegard Mousasi, elite guy in the division, was impressive. Both are on a roll right now, so this has POTN or FOTN written all over it. Either way, I don’t see this going the distance. Hall’s timing for counterstrikes and his improved takedown defence, the confidence he has in himself right now, I see him coming up with some ninja type move to turn out the lights of Whittaker.
Wiseman Prediction: Urijah Hall via TKO
#8 MARK “SUPER SAMOAN” HUNT (10-9-1) VS #11 ANTONIO “BIGFOOT” SILVA (19-7-0, 1NC)
Wiseman: Well, these guys fought a couple of years ago and it seems that this is going to be the continuing rounds since it was a draw that last time. Honestly, Hunt did more when against the cage. Silva would throw kicks which would do damage, but he didn’t do much when in the clinch. Hunt scored takedowns in the last fight and that’s where his gameplan should start here. This isn’t going to be a high-paced fight, but more less remarkable because these guys have gone five rounds before. I see Hunt being keeping distance on his side to take away Silva’s ability to put anything together.
Wiseman Prediction: Mark “Super Samoan” Hunt via unanimous decision.
(C) JOANNA JEDRZEJCZYK (10-0-0) VS #9 VALERIE “TROUBLE” LETORUNEAU (8-3-0)
Wiseman: Two tough ladies, but Jedrzejczyk, I mean come on. Her speed and power are unequalled in the division. Letourneau has power, but is much slower, which will only allow Jedrzejczyk to go wild with her hands. The striking and accuracy of Jedrzejczyk is something else that will be a challenge. Something else I’ve noticed is that since Jedrzejczyk has become champ; she doesn’t let anything go the distance. It’s almost like she wants to just tear these girls up, leaving no doubt that she won. Latourneau has left that octagon in rough shape before, so there is no question of her heart for the sport, but I feel like she will need to take down all of the mirrors in her house for a little while after this one.
Wiseman Prediction: Joanna Jedrzejczyk via TKO.
(C) “ROWDY” RONDA ROUSEY (12-0-0) VS HOLLY “THE PREACHER’S DAUGHTER” HOLM (9-0-0)
Wiseman: When I first heard of this fight I thought, ‘This is too soon.’ I’ve been watching Holm for awhile and she could give Rousey a little challenge simply because of how she fights. Every girl that has fought Rousey rushed in, closed the distance, ended up in a hip toss of some sort, then game over. Holm knows how to fight long and keep things at a distance, so in that way she will challenge Ronda. However, Ronda, even if rocked, will just plunge forward to get ahold of Holm. Ronda’s striking has grown, but it’s obviously not to the level of Holm, just like Holm can never reach the level of Ronda’s Judo. Just facts, but Ronda’s striking improvement will allow her to close the distance when she needs if she feels threatened.
Wiseman Prediction: “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey via submission.