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UFC 193 Picks

UFC 193 Picks
When: Saturday, November 14th, 2015
Where: Etihad Stadium, Melbourne Australia
TV: PPV
by Scott of Predictem.com

Fight Analysis:

UFC 193 features MMA superstar Ronda Rousey defending her UFC Women’s Bantamweight Title against unbeaten challenger Holly Holm. Rousey is again a massive favorite, with her recent bouts ending in a matter of seconds. But in Holm, she will be getting a different look, taking on an accomplished former boxing champion. Will Holm derail the Rousey express train or is this going to be another ultra-dominant wipeout for the champion?

Ronda Rousey, 12-0 (3 KOs, 9 Submissions), (-1250) vs. Holly Holm, 9-0 (6 KOs), (+825)
On Nov. 14th, Ronda Rousey defends her UFC Women’s Bantamweight Championship against unbeaten challenger Holly Holm.. Rousey is making her 7th defense, most of them ending in shockingly-easy fashion. Holm is looking to put her boxing to good use to spring what would be a titanic upset.

Holm, who will be 34 by fight night, has enjoyed an illustrious career in fighting, establishing herself as one of the best boxers and now 9-0 in her MMA career. She offers some appeal as a challenger. She is unbeaten and was highly-accomplished as a boxing champion. But what about her worth in the MMA arena? She is certainly a capable contender in the starved waters of women’s bantamweights, but the gap between her and Rousey is still awfully vast, as is the case with Rousey and the entire division.

This fight was supposed to go to two-time Rousey victim Miesha Tate. But apparently, the UFC thought better of it and gave Holm a shot. While no one was overly-excited about seeing Tate in there for a third time, that might not be the reason for Holm being jettisoned in as an unexpected challenger.

The women’s bantamweight division lags far behind its champion. The amount of attractive opponents is few and far between. What the UFC has in Holm is something different—not just another MMA practitioner whose skills pale in comparison to Rousey’s. Holm’s past gives her an appeal, like maybe she has something different to offer. With Rousey blowing out foes in seconds, it becomes important to keep her PPV bouts compelling. It wouldn’t do them any good to have Rousey fight Tate and then have Holm keep pushing her luck, when she hasn’t looked that great in her two UFC fights.

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If Holm ending up losing, it would render her appeal moot. So you can almost understand why the UFC would hasten her challenge of Rousey. Tate will be there afterwards. It was thought that Holm would be a major player at 135 pounds, with her far-superior striking giving her an edge. And it has to some extent. But her split decision over Raquel Pennington wasn’t all that impressive and her decision win over Marion Reneau showed that while her striking is a factor, it isn’t giving her as much separation as you would like to see.

Not to pile on Holm. Her accomplishments speak for themselves. But after a long boxing career and an adult life packed with one form of fighting or another, she may be wearing down slightly. She took some punishment in her boxing career, namely in a TKO loss to Anne Sophie Mathis, who she decisioned in a rematch. And while a great boxer, she was always more of a scientific fighter, rather than one who relied on power. You’d almost rather see an expert boxer who relied on power in a spot like this. A punch landing can happen quite easily. Unraveling and executing a complicated plan of scientific boxing is more difficult.

She should still have a pronounced advantage in striking over Rousey. But Ronda has really improved in that area, winning 3 of her last 4 fights with strikes. One possible avenue for victory for Holm would be if Rousey engaged her on her own terms in a show of defiance. Maybe Rousey has fallen in love with her stand-up in light of recent positive results.

It’s hard to really wrap your head around the magnitude of what the “World’s Most Dominant Athlete” is doing. She is facing some of the best available fighters in the world and not only beating them, but making mockeries of them. In her last 5 fights, only one opponent has lasted longer than a minute, with Sara McMann lasting all of 1:06. We all accept it, but do we really know what we are watching? There simply aren’t avenues in sport where athletes stand so far above their contemporaries.

In fighting, we often see one fighter dominate and then something happens. The fighter gets lackadaisical, loses focus, starts reading press clippings, or an opponent just so happens to have their number. Will Ronda get complacent? Will all the hype, movie roles, and adulation dull her razor’s edge? Will fighting someone who can actually throw correct punches put her fight into a different light?

Rousey is a student of women’s fighting and knows the basis of Holm’s high standing. It seems like a weird time for her to start losing focus, even if Holm doesn’t figure to start a personal beef with Rousey to get her fired up even more. She will be respectful of Holm enough to give this her full preparation and focus. We have seen shooting movies become preambles for heavily-favored fighters losing, namely when Lennox Lewis got knocked out by Hasim Rahman while even a bigger favorite than Rousey is in this fight. Even so, it would take a bolt from beyond to derail Rousey at this point and if willing to predict that, you’d want to be getting better than +825. I’m taking Rousey.

My Pick to Win: I’m betting on Ronda Rousey at -1250. While she would likely lose to Holm in a boxing match, this is a completely different sport. While Holm is good at what she does, Rousey is even better and more dominant at what she does.. Bet your Rousey/Holm prediction using your credit card at an online sportsbook where it WILL work for deposits and where you'll receive a generous 50% sign-up bonus: Bovada Sportsbook.

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