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Fighter on Fighter: Breaking down UFC Fight Night 111’s Bethe Correia

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Fighter on Fighter: Breaking down UFC Fight Night 111’s Bethe Correia

MMAmania.com resident fighter analyst — and aspiring professional fighter — Andrew Richardson breaks down the mixed martial arts (MMA) game of UFC Fight Night 111’s Bethe Correia, who will look to score a major upset this Saturday (June 17, 2017) inside Singapore Indoor Arena in Kellang, Singapore.

Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Bantamweight title challenger, Bethe Correia, will duel with former professional boxer, Holly Holm, this Saturday (June 17, 2017) at UFC Fight Night 111 inside Singapore Indoor Arena in Kellang, Singapore.

Considering her background and general skill set, Correia’s success is honestly pretty incredible.

The Brazilian didn’t start training in any form of martial arts until late in her life, primarily picking up the sport simply to stay in shape. At some point, she decided to give professional competition a try, and Correia was in the UFC less than two years later.

Inside the Octagon, Correia has found far more success than anyone could really expect. She’s 4-2-1 in the UFC, and both of those losses are very respectable. Hell, one was for the title — a domination, sure, but that’s how Rousey won fights — and the other was a split decision to a current top contender!

Somehow, Correia wins fights, so let’s take a closer look at her skill set and try to figure it out.

Striking

Correia does much of her work on the feet, where her biggest attribute is an ability to stay in her opponent’s face and throw at a higher volume than them. Even against respectable strikers and better athletes like Raquel Pennington, Jessica Eye, and Marion Reneau, Holm’s consistent offense has found her real success.

Overall, Correia likes to pressure her opponents. Stalking her foe around the cage, Correia keeps an active jab going and steps into punches whenever in range. She’s not the best at cutting off the cage, but Correia manages to walk her foe into the fence often enough just because she doesn’t back away (GIF).

Often, Correia will look to punch her way into the clinch. That’s a strong area for her as well, as dirty boxing in the clinch is grueling work that doesn’t rely so much on athleticism. From that distance, Correia drives her head into the jaw well, allowing her to keep her foe pinned and chip away with short shots. One of her preferred tactics is to isolate her opponent’s wrist and yank down, clubbing away with her free hand.

Not exactly Daniel Cormier-level uppercuts in the clinch, but all those shots count!

Correia is rarely willing to back away from an exchange without firing. If her step forward is answered with punches, Correia is almost always going to fire back. Ideally, she’ll slip those strikes and respond simultaneously, which is the strategy we covered in this week’s technique highlight.

BETHE VIDEO

Alternatively, Correia actively looks to counter her opponent’s jab. Usually, she’ll slip outside the strike and return fire with a cross or combination. In her last fight, Correia did a nice job of level changing below the jab and firing at Reneau’s midsection.

Body work is another strong part of Correia’s attack. She frequently mixes her combination punches to the head and body, which increases her accuracy. It also takes advantage of her high-volume style, sapping her opponent’s energy and leveling the athletic field a bit.

It’s definitely worth-mentioning that Correia is a hittable fighter. As a less-than-fast fighter pressuring, it’s just a part of the game. Even with her head movement, Correia absorbs shots at a less than ideal rate. While it may not be pretty, Correia’s general approach is basically a bet that she can absorb those shots and return with three, and it has carried her this far.

Wrestling

A shorter fighter with a strong lower body, Correia’s wrestling has proven surprisingly solid. She hasn’t struggled with being controlled from top position in any of her bouts, defending a stellar 85% of her opponent’s takedowns.

Offensively, Correia is an opportunist. Securing the takedown may not be a primary part of her game, but she’ll definitely take those points if the chance is there. Her most common approach is to punch into the clinch and attempt to grab a body lock. Due to her frequent body punching, this is a solid setup that has yielded some results. Additionally, she smoothly converted a caught low kick into a single leg dump in her last bout.

Offensive wrestling may not be a true strength, but there’s always a chance she catches Holm off-balance to land top position.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

A blue belt in jiu-jitsu, Correia has yet to really use much offensive grappling in any of her fights. On the plus side, she’s shown an ability to scramble back to her feet if necessary, securing an underhook and working into a single leg. Defensively, Correia was badly stunned by a head kick in her last bout but still managed to avoid getting choked out by a solid grappler.

Conclusion

It may be hard to imagine Correia winning this bout, but it’s not the worst style match up imaginable for her. Correia is a reasonably sharp — if not particularly powerful — counter puncher, and Holm has proven remarkably easy to counter. In a fight between two volume punches without real stopping power, there’s always a chance that Correia’s pressure and determination actually makes the difference.

*****

Andrew Richardson, a Brazilian jiu-jitsu purple belt, is an amateur fighter who trains at Team Alpha Male in Sacramento, California. In addition to learning alongside world-class talent, Andrew has scouted opponents and developed winning strategies for several of the sport’s most elite fighters.

Source:: mma mania