UFC 172 Play: Bethe “Pitbull” Correia (-105) vs Jessamyn “The Gun” Duke (-105)

Jessamyn DukeUFC 172 Date: April 26, 2014 Arena: Baltimore Arena City: Baltimore, MD Women’s bantamweight bout: Bethe “Pitbull” Correia (-105) vs Jessamyn “The Gun” Duke (-105) Fight Breakdown: The UFC 172 preliminary card on FOX Sports 1 will feature a women’s bantamweight contest in the form of Bethe “Pitbull” Correia and Jessamyn “The Gun” Duke. The betting odds for this bout are at an exact coin-flip, with each lady being -105 ($105 to win $100) at Several Bookmakerss. Bethe “Pitbull” Correia (7-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC) is coming off a split-decision victory over the now-retired Julie Kedzie over four months ago in what was her promotional debut. At times a slow starter, Correia uses great footwork and head movement, and puts together some solid combinations on the feet, including a variety of 1-2’s. She is a very aggressive fighter who likes to dictate cage control and back her opponents up. The Brazilian likes to pressure her opponents against the cage and do damage from the position, including body shots and foot stomps. She works great body shots, in general, and has a dangerous left hook, not to mention a powerful overhand right. She has a nice high kick, and works heavy leg kicks that take a lot out of her opponents. The Brazilian has solid takedown defense, but her grappling in general is questionable. I believe she will be at a disadvantage in that department in this bout against the TUF 18 veteran. Correia trains with the “Pitbull” brothers Patricio and Patricky, hence her nickname and fighting style. Also much like her fellow Brazilian teammates, she possesses a great chin and loves to brawl. Her striking defense is solid, and she has tremendous cardio. I have no doubt she’ll be able to go the full 15 minutes against Duke, should the fight reach the judges’ scorecards. Jessamyn “The Gun” Duke (3-0-1 NC MMA, 1-0 UFC) is coming off a unanimous decision victory over fellow The Ultimate Fighter season 18 veteran Peggy Morgan. She dominated Morgan for all three rounds of action, notching her first win inside the Octagon. She now looks to make it 2-0 in the UFC’s women’s bantamweight division, as she gets ready to take on the undefeated Brazilian. Duke has decent takedown defense, but when taken down, she is very active off her back. She has a good rubber guard, and works submissions off her back effectively. In fact, she secured a first round triangle choke victory to earn a spot in the TUF house, where she went on to lose a hard-fought close decision to Raquel Pennington in the quarterfinals. “The Gun” is a talented Thai boxer who moves well on her feet, and throws solid kicks. She has excellent footwork, and is a polished striker who continues to sharpen her game, as is evident with the work she has been putting in with striking coach Edvard Tarverdyan at the Glendale Fight Club in California. Her grappling has certainly been improving, as well, considering the work she has been putting in with UFC women’s bantamweight champion “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey, who has become a main training partner of Duke’s since her time on the reality series. The 27-year old’s conditioning is pretty good, and is another department in which she has shown improvement. Gabe’s Prediction: I like Duke in this match-up because I think her reach advantage and technical edge on the feet will make the difference in the fight if it plays out as a 15 minute striking battle. That said, if the fight hits the mat, I feel like Duke has a good chance at securing a submission victory, as I believe she holds a significant advantage on the ground, even if she is fighting off her back. Gabe’s Call: ”The Gun” by Submission (triangle-armbar, 3:54 round 1) Gabe’s Recommended Play: Jessamyn Duke (-105) 4.2u to win 4u

Written by Gabe Killian

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