UFC 185 Fight Breakdown: Larissa Pacheco vs. Germaine de Randamie

Larissa-Pacheco One of the prelims at UFC 185 is a three-round women’s bantamweight bout between Larissa Pacheco and Germaine de Randamie. According to the current betting lines available at Several Bookmakers, Pacheco is a -155 favorite (bet $155 to win $100) while de Randamie is a 135+ underdog (bet $100 to win $135). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened up Pacheco at -130 and de Randamie at -110, and so far the action has been on Pacheco. This is a very competitive fight, and a tough one to call, but I slightly lean towards Pacheco to get the W. Here’s why. Pacheco (10-1) is one of the top prospects in the UFC women’s bantamweight division. Only 20 years of age, the Brazilian has already achieved 10 wins in her career, all coming by way of knockout or submission, including a notable TKO win over Invicta FC sensation Irene Aldana. Pacheco is a dangerous fighter anywhere the fight takes place. On the feet she has knockout power and on the ground she has the ability to submit her opponents. However, her level of competition hasn’t been that great outside of Aldana and the woman she fought in her UFC debut, Jessica Andrade, who subbed Pacheco in the first round with a guillotine. Seeing Pacheco losing that quickly was concerning, as perhaps she isn’t ready for this level of the game, but overall this is a young fighter who is constantly improving and she’s definitely going to turn into someone special one day, the question is if that’s now or later. De Randamie (4-3) comes from a muay Thai background. The 30-year-old native of Holland is 1-1 in the UFC with a split decision win over Julie Kedzie and a TKO loss to Amanda Nunes. She has not fought since the Nunes fight, which was 16 months ago, so she will be entering this bout coming off of a long layoff. De Randamie is a muay Thai striker and she is quite good on the feet. She is tall and long for the division and uses all of her limbs to tear up her opponents. I wouldn’t say she has stopping power, but she does throw with a good volume. However, while her striking is certainly solid, her wrestling is suspect. She showed decent takedown defence against Kedzie in her UFC debut, but she was taken down by Nunes and smashed on the ground in her sophomore effort, looking lost as far as Brazilian jiu-jitsu goes. I think she’s probably been working a lot on her BJJ and I expect her overall grappling to be a bit improved, but still, she’s lacking in that department compared to other fighters in the division. With her solid technique on the feet she can definitely make this an interesting fight if it stays standing, but if she gets taken down she’s likely going to lose. Overall, I do think Pacheco is the right side here, but it’s hard to be confident in her. I think she’s the better overall mixed martial artist and that’s why I’m picking her, but seeing her lose to quickly to Andrade was concerning, and watching tape on her, she leaves a lot of openings on the feet where her opponent can hit her. De Randamie isn’t a great overall fighter, but she’s a capable striker that could take advantage of the defensive openings the Brazilian leaves on the feet. The fact that Pacheco is 10 years younger and has taken less damage in her career makes me lean towards her, but I’m expecting a close, competitive standup bout that likely hits the scoreboards, and that’s not a fight I want to put my money on. The pick is Pacheco, as I think she can get a few takedowns along the way to go along with her strikes, but I can’t recommend a bet on this fight at all.

Written by Adam Martin.

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