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The main-event comes in the Women’s Bantamweight division, as Champion Julianna Pena makes her first title defense in a rematch against former Champion Amanda Nunes. Coming off one of the biggest upsets of all-time, Pena enters the octagon with some newfound respect and a chance to close out the chapter on arguably the greatest female champion of all-time. Having won the last two fights via submission, the former Ultimate Fighter winner’s potential has finally peaked seven years later. Meanwhile, Nunes comes into this fight seeking revenge. Having seen an over five-year title reign end, which included five title defenses and nine consecutive victories, Nunes has been chomping at the bit to get her hands on Pena.

Given how shocking the result of the first fight was, I’d say the anticipation for the rematch has grown over the last seven months. Pena is a fairly well rounded fighter, who’s strength lies within her offensive wrestling and grappling. No slouch on the feet either, as seen in her fight against Nunes, Pena would ideally rather be on the ground. It’s where the Champion has seen the most success throughout her career. Landing a takedown in each of her nine UFC fights, Pena has found little resistance in taking opponents down. From there, she is active with ground-and-pound and will fish for submissions. Looking to avoid become another victim of Pena’s on the ground is Nunes. A ferocious striker, who arguably packs the biggest punch among all females in mixed martial arts. No joke either on the ground, Nunes has shown wrestling and grappling abilities that are capable of winning fights. However, it’s on the feet where she is most dangerous.

I’ll admit, the first fight between the two, I completely dismissed Pena. Not because she wasn’t good enough, but due to the fact that she had faltered in the big fights. Knowing that she is capable of more, perhaps we continue to see Pena continue to tap into the potential we saw when she won the Ultimate Fighter. She’ll need it too, as I believe Nunes is coming into this fight with a massive chip on her shoulder. One that has eaten away at her for seven month’s. While Pena could definitely come out on top again, I don’t see it happening. Nunes was flat on the night of the defeat. She lacked cardio and looked lost on the feet. Two aspects that were refined before this fight. Knowing she is the better striker and has the takedown defense to keep it upright, I predict we see the power of the former Champion rear it’s teeth. So with that said, I predict that Nunes will win via KO.

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