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The curtain jerker comes in the Women’s Strawweight division, as Luana Pinheiro takes on Sam ‘Sampage’ Hughes. After a wild UFC debut against Randa Markos that ended in a disqualification victory for Pinheiro, the Brazilian will make her second trip to the octagon with the intention of winning without any illegal shots dictating the result. The victory nevertheless was Pinheiro’s seventh consecutive. Meanwhile, Hughes will hope that the third time’s the charm. After dropping her first two UFC fights, Hughes desperately needs a victory to keep her job.
Since making her UFC debut in December of 2020, Sam Hughes has had a tough time finding her footing. Perhaps signing with the UFC after five professional fights and in back-to-back UFC bouts, fighting the likes of Tecia Torres and Loma Lookboonmee wasn’t exactly a recipe for success. Stepping in on short notice with your job on the line against Luana Pinheiro isn’t either. In fact, given Hughes’ issues with pressure and grappling, and the fact that she was taken down four times by Muay Thai specialist Loma Lookboonmee, one would have the foresight to believe this is a difficult fight for Sampage.
As for a prediction, I have Pinheiro winning. Against Randa Markos, which was a fast and furious fight, she had several memorable moments. Perhaps the most memorable was her fast hands and strength, as she literally tossed Markos around in the octagon. Landing a total of five takedowns before an illegal upkick that halted the fight in the opening round, one can fathom how Pinheiro fares against Hughes, who as I noted previously, was taken down four times by a Muay Thai specialist. In the end, I believe Pinheiro dominates Hughes, eventually winning via TKO.