Ashlee Evans-Smith will clash against Norma Dumont Viana in a women’s bantamweight division fight this Saturday. The duo will touch gloves at the last fight of the preliminary card. Both the combatants are currently unranked, but a Saturday night win can help them secure a spot in the top-15.
Leading up to this enigmatic matchup, we analyze the pros and cons for both the fighters and underline their routes to victory.
Ashlee Evans-Smith will make a comeback to the UFC octagon nearly after 21 months. She last fought in February 2019 and suffered a unanimous decision loss to Andrea Lee. Her last win was in 2018 against Bec Rawlings in the flyweight division. ‘The Rebel Girl’ has a 6-4 pro-MMA and 3-4 record in the UFC.
Ashlee has recorded 50% of her wins via T/KO and 50% via submission. The 5’8” fighter has landed 4.86 strikes in a minute with 35% accuracy in the UFC. She also has a good takedown defense of 72%. ‘The Rebel Girl’ is more of a standup fighter than a grappler.
Norma Dumont Viana has a 4-1 pro-MMA record. She last fought in February and went down to Megan Anderson on her promotional debut.
She holds a couple of first-round rear-naked choke finishes in her career. The Brazilian is an excellent grappler with 100% takedown accuracy in her sole UFC fight. However, her striking abilities didn’t come to the fore in the limited time her fight lasted.
This matchup is firmly between a striker and a grappler. It will be interesting to watch if Ashlee can avoid vicious takedowns. Norma will have to maintain her to avoid heavy hands from ‘The Rebel Girl’. She will look to take her to the canvas as soon as she can.
Evans-Smith exhibits a good standup game, but not the best one. But, in terms of experience and credible opponents, she has an upper hand over Dumont.
Prediction – Ashlee Evans-Smith by unanimous decision.
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