TUF 20 Finale Fight Breakdown: Joanne Calderwood vs. Seo Hee Ham

Joanne-Calderwood One of the prelims at the TUF 20 Finale is a three-round women’s strawweight bout between Joanne Calderwood and Seo Hee Ham. According to the current betting lines available at Several Bookmakers, Calderwood is a -600 favorite (bet $600 to win $100) while Ham is a +450 underdog (bet $100 to win $450). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened up Calderwood at -565 and Ham at +375, and so far the bettors like Calderwood in this matchup. I like Calderwood here a lot as well and think she deserves to be a big favorite. Here’s why. Calderwood (8-0) is one of the top female strawweights in the world. The 27-year-old native of Scotland is undefeated in her pro career, with wins over the likes of Invicta FC strawweight champion Katja Kankaanpaa and Ashley Cummins. Calderwood competed on TUF 20, going 1-1 in the house with a decision win over Emily Kagan and a submission loss to Rose Namajunas, but overall many think she under-performed. Calderwood is a muay Thai fighter and has fantastic knees and kicks, but in her last few fights she has attempted to grapple more and show off her wrestling and clinch skills. It’s nice to see Calderwood show a different part of her game, but her desire to grapple cost her against Namajunas, where she was submitted with a Kimura. Against Ham I could see Calderwood wanting to show off her striking, but I think it’s more likely she attempts to use her wrestling. She will have the size advantage in this fight and I think she will use it to get benefit, and I agree she deserves to be a big favorite here. Ham (15-5) is a top kickboxer out of South Korea. She has very good striking and her style has been compared to Wanderlei Silva’s, hence her nickname “Hamderlei Silva.” She is currently riding a six-fight win streak in MMA and at just 27 years of age she could have a bright future in the sport if she keeps improving. She already has nice striking, so if she can add some grappling to go with it she could beat some of the lower-level strawweights. But I don’t think she can beat someone like Calderwood, who will be much bigger than her and have an advantage in the grappling. If the UFC opens up a 105lb atomweight division, Ham could contend for the belt, but at 115lbs she will be fodder for the top fighters in the division, and Calderwood certainly qualifies as that. If this fight stays in the center of the Octagon it could be competitive, but I really doubt that’s going to be the case. Calderwood is known by fans as a striker but from what I have seen from her lately she is more content to grapple than ever before and I actually think she will choose to wrestle with Ham in this fight and grind out the decision. She’s the bigger fighter, and I think she will use her wrestling advantage instead of risk things by standing and trading. Calderwood is a big favorite, but it’s justified, in my opinion, and she should be a nice piece to use for parlays.

Written by Adam Martin.

Leave a Reply

TUF 20 Newcomer Breakdown: Lisa Ellis

Gabe Killian’s Live Dogs for the TUF 20 Finale