UFC 2016: Women’s Bantamweight preview and predictions

Embed from Getty Images

By Niall Clarke

  • UFC Women’s Bantamweight preview and predictions
  • Holly Holm is the current champion
  • Ronda Rousey set to return

The build up towards 2016 continues with a look at a division that made plenty of headline’s in 2015, the UFC Women’s Bantamweight division.

Holly Holm’s knockout of Rousey provided one of the biggest stories in not only MMA, but sport in general. The seemingly unbeatable Rousey was dominated by ‘The Preacher’s Daughter’ in one of the most shocking fights in UFC history.

The former champion will serve a medical suspension during the early months of 2016, but expect her to be back as she attempts to reclaim the Bantamweight title.

That will open the door for another contender to face the unbeaten champion whilst Rousey recovers. Miesha Tate might be that very opponent to bridge Holm to the potentially huge money making rematch.

That is not to say Tate is not capable of throwing a spanner in the works, but after Holm’s impressive performance to claim the title it is hard not to back her against ‘cupcake’.

That will lead to the enormous rematch between Holm and Rousey. This will draw the biggest or close to the biggest buy rate in company history and could possibly main event UFC 200 or another huge event.

The eyes of the world will be watching this eagerly anticipated rematch and they will see Rousey put up a much better fight this time around…. only to lose again. With all the fame she has picked up during her reign as champion, there will be potential offers from Hollywood and the WWE which will tempt Rousey away from MMA. The champion retains and Rousey ‘retires’ from MMA to pursue a different career.

Meanwhile, other contenders will be fighting each other to become the number one contender for Holm’s title. It is a wide open division below the number one fighter and it could be anyone’s guess as to who the champion fights next. Personally, i think it might be Cat Zingano who in her first shot, never really got going at all against Rousey- It was over in the matter of seconds.

Holm will likely retain to finish a busy year. The Preacher’s Daughter seems like a fighting champion who will defend her belt fairly often, so a three fight year is not out of the question.

There is one elephant in the room to be settled, what about Cristiane ‘Cyborg’ Justino? The Brazilian, who is known as the one of the best pound for pound fighters in the world, is signed by the UFC but struggles to make the 135lbs weight limit. Naturally she is a featherweight, but there is no women’s division at that weight.

‘Cyborg’ will make her debut in 2016 at 140lbs Catchweight. The UFC may not create another division, but no way do they not use one of the biggest women’s MMA stars.

Keep an eye out for the UFC men’s Bantamweight preview tomorrow.