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The main event comes in the Women’s Bantamweight division, as the former Champion Holly “The Preacher’s Daughter” Holm takes on Ketlen “Fenomeno” Vieira. Returning to the octagon for the first time since October of 2020, Holm will look to continue her trek back to the title, A winner of two straight, which included an impressive performance over Irene Aldana, Holm has proven that her time at the top isn’t over yet. Meanwhile, Vieira is coming off a victory over former Champion Miesha Tate. Having lost two of three heading into that fight, Vieira proved that she still is a contender in the Bantamweight division. With a huge opportunity to defeat another former title challenger and inch closer to a title shot, I’m sure we’ll see the best version of Vieira in this fight.
As for a prediction, I have Holm winning. When Vieira defeated Kelly Faszholz, Ashlee Evans-Smith, Sara McMann and Cat Zingano in her first four UFC fights, I thought she was bound to be a future title contender and maybe even a Champion. However, since then, I’ve been unimpressed. Obviously the Irene Aldana knockout was a setback, but the three fights since have been relatively close. Unable to separate herself from opponents due to her low output and striking accuracy, Vieira has often looked to her wrestling and grappling to lead the way. While it worked in the Sijara Eubanks fight, it did not the Yana Kunitskaya fight – where she was out-landed 47-7 in strikes. Against Holm, who is one of the best strikers in the division, I don’t see Vieira having an answer. Even if she resorts to wrestling, Holm has been tough to not only take down, but hold down. Even adding wrestling to her game, Holm has landed nine takedowns in her last four fights.
A patient and cerebral striker, Holm uses her footwork to get inside and out. With excellent cardio backing her game, Holm isn’t someone who ever slows down. An aspect in which is key in this fight, as I believe due to the pace and the fact that it’s five rounds, Vieira will fade sooner than later. Seeing that Vieira absorbed 122 significant strikes against Tate and Holm tagged Aldana 154 times, I believe we are in for a repeat performance of vintage Holm. So with that said, I predict Holm will win via decision. Although I wouldn’t be surprised to see a late finish!