Saturday, June 17th, 2017 in Kallang, Singapore for UFC Fight Night 111: “Holm vs Correia” by Daniel Tom

The opinions expressed in this free content are for entertainment purposes only, as my goal here is to provide analysis for those who enjoy the technical or gaming aspects of our sport. If you choose to gamble, I recommend doing so responsibly and legally as it is at your own risk. Enjoy the fights!

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Holly Holm (10-3)

Staple info:

  • Height: 5’8″ Age: 35 Weight: 135 lbs Reach: 70″
  • Last Fight: Decision loss / G. De Randamie (2-11-17)
  • Camp: Jackson-Wink MMA (New Mexico)
  • Stance/Striking Style: Southpaw / Kickboxing
  • Risk Management: Excellent

Supplemental info:
+   Former UFC Bantamweight Champion
+   Pro Boxing Experience (33-2-3)
+   5 KO victories
+   5 2nd round finishes
+   Disciplined footwork & movement
^   Excellent distance management
+   Active & accurate cross
+   Hard left body & head kicks
+/-Sometimes lunges on strikes
^   Counter availabilities
+   Deceptively strong in clinch
^   Works well off over & under-hooks
+   Consistent round winner

Bethe Correia (10-2-1)

Staple info:

  • Height: 5’5″ Age: 33 Weight: 135 lbs Reach: 64″
  • Last Fight: Draw / Marion Reneau (3-11-17)
  • Camp: Pitbull Brothers (Brazil)
  • Stance/Striking Style: Orthodox / Muay Thai
  • Risk Management: Fair

Supplemental info:
+   BJJ Blue Belt
+   Kung Fu Purple Belt
+   2 KO victories
+   2 2nd round finishes
+   Improved jab & fundamentals
+   Hard hook—cross combinations
^   Coming forward & off the counter
+/-Sometimes starts slow
+/-Aggressive in exchanges
^   Counter availabilities
+   Deceptively strong in clinch
^   Dirty boxing & under-hook awareness
+   Improved takedown timing


The main event on UFC Fight Pass features a battle of female bantamweights as Holly Holm meets Bethe Correia.

Coming off of a rough 2016–in which she lost her title amidst a three-fight skid–Holly Holm will attempt to return to the form of the undefeated fighter who shocked the world at UFC 193.

Looking to crash the comeback is Bethe Correia––who despite embracing the role of a heel––has made real improvements to her game as she will try and steal some shine from the fan favorite.

Given the nature of each fighter’s style, I suspect the majority of this battle to take place standing. There, Holm should carry an edge on paper, but Correia may have some say-so in this contest if the American is not careful.

Coming into the UFC as a stalking slugger, Correia has since made refinements to her game from fight-to-fight. Now, measuring her range off an improved jab, the Brazilian will more aptly land her hook–cross combinations, both coming forward and off of the counter.

Correia has also made subtle upgrades to her kicking game in her last couple of outings––countering and landing leg kicks with more regularity as this could be something she may explore in attempts to limit her counterparts movement.

More of a stick-and-move stylist, Holm demonstrates excellent footwork and distance management as she plays just outside of range. Utilizing her lateral movement until finding an opening to her liking, Holm will engage in strafing runs, throwing a variety of pre-programmed combinations.

Although Holm’s racehorse-like efficiency and discipline are impressive, she can be a bit predictable in the plays that she runs. A consistency of patterns that she carried over from boxing, Holm will usually circle to her left to reset, and move to her right when attempting to achieve attack angles.

In resetting/circling to the left, Holm gets her opposition to follow her as she will then quickly strike and exit off to an angle. When doing so, Holm does a good job of getting her head offline as she throws her patent cross down the center as I feel that will serve her well in this fight.

Correia, who has improved at exiting off angles––still traditionally comes straight forward in attack––often swinging wide in her approach. For this reason, Holm’s front-teeps and sidekicks may also have more play than usual for her in this matchup.

Nevertheless, the former bantamweight champ will also need to mind her defenses when attacking. Holm, who will sometimes lunge with low-hands when punching, also tends to exit exchanges unprotected on her left side.

Upon further film study, I found that this was a common theme that dated back to Holm’s first fight with Ann Sophie Mathis. Though she came back to defeat Mathis later in her boxing career, we would see Holm’s point scoring style personified as she edged out rounds and avoided exchanges.

Although Holm’s sensibilities initially translated well to MMA(especially when it came to shutting down grapplers who wanted to ground her), the American’s patterns would be sniffed out steadily when pitted against more competent strikers.

We saw a less accoladed striker in Raquel Pennington eventually pick up on Holm’s tendencies, as Pennington was able to land counter right hands with regularity by the third round. In my upset call of last Summer, we saw Valentina Shevchenko land check right hooks with regularity as she exploited the openings mentioned above.

And considering the success we saw Germaine de Randamie have with right-hands, I would not be surprised to see Correia find moments in this fight as she does a decent job of crashing space with her cross, throwing simultaneously with her opposition’s attacks.

Regardless of how things go standing, I feel that the clinch may play a factor in this fight, especially should this battle go to the cards.

Though neither lady is known for their takedown acumen, they both have made improvements to their clinch game, which include offensive takedown efforts that likely carry round-winning intents.

Correia, who will dirty box if given the opportunity, generally elects for under-hooks to stay safe and control the pace while inside clinch space. Whereas Holm, who demonstrates solid over & under-hook triggers of her own, will consistently frame with her forearms(primarily off an over-hook) as she circles and breaks to safety.

Unless Correia has continued to improve on her catch-kick counters––which could be risky against the question mark kicking Holm––then I do not expect to see much ground fighting from either combatant, outside of late-round stanzas to help sway the scorecards.

Although I agree with Holm coming in as a heavy favorite, any line this wide––especially in the female division––is often hard to swallow given the consistent upsets produced by its limited sample sizes.

Still, this is a matchup that favors Holm stylistically. She is more technical, athletic, and I suspect a bit faster too as I see the American’s footwork making the main difference. Correia’s durability may keep her in the fight, but unless she can capitalize on small moments, then I see the Brazilian getting beat to the punch in exchanges with the potential of being stopped late.

Official Pick: Holm – Inside the distance

Official Outcome: Holm – KO (round 3)

Andrei Arlovski (25-14-1)

Staple info:

  • Height: 6’4″ Age: 38 Weight: 241 lbs Reach: 77″
  • Last Fight: TKO loss / Francis Ngannou (1-28-17)
  • Camp: *Jackson-Wink MMA (Belarus)
  • Stance/Striking Style: Orthodox / Kickboxing
  • Risk Management: Fair

Supplemental info:
+   Former UFC Heavyweight Champion
+   Multiple Sambo Accolades
+   17 KO victories
+   3 Submission wins
+   13 first round finishes
+   KO power
^   Heavy-hands
+   Accurate cross & uppercuts
+   Deceptive hand & foot speed
+/-Blitzes on stunned opponents
^   Counter availabilities
+   Strong inside the clinch
^   Stifles / favors outside trips
+/-Plays it safe grappling
^   Primarily looks to stall
–    Low strike retractions
–    Dropped/stopped in last 6 fights

Marcin Tybura (15-2)

Staple info:

  • Height: 6’3″ Age: 31 Weight: 249 lbs Reach: 78″
  • Last Fight: TKO win / Luis Henrique (3-4-17)
  • Camp: S4 Fight Club (Poland)
  • Stance/Striking Style: Orthodox / Kickboxing
  • Risk Management: Fair

Supplemental info:
+   M-1 Heavyweight Titles
+   Brown Belt BJJ
+   7 KO victories
+   6 Submission wins
+   9 first round finishes
+   KO power
+   Improved striking combinations
^   Good economy of movement
+   Works well of the lead leg
+   Accurate offensively & off the counter
+/-Sometimes retreats backward & upright
+   Strong inside of the clinch
^   Sneaky elbows & solid defense
+   Underrated wrestling
^   Well-timed takedowns & strong hips
+   Excellent back-takes & transitions
^   Floats, rides, strikes, submits


The co-main event in Singapore is a heavyweight showdown between Andrei Arlovski and Marcin Tybura.

An almost 20-year veteran of MMA who has held UFC gold, Andrei Arlovski has seen it all. In what looked to be a late-career resurgence in 2015, would ultimately come to a halt at the hands of now-champion, Stipe Miocic––as Arlovski has since lost his last 4-fights in total heading into this bout.

Looking to test the state(and likely roster spot) of the veteran, is Polish prospect Marcin Tybura. A former champion and product of the M-1 MMA circuits, Tybura has demonstrated the staying power and potential to compete in this division thus far, as this should prove to be an appropriate test of where the water level currently resides.

Despite being criticized early on for his lack of striking presence, Marcin Tybura has steadily developed a kickboxing game since switching camps and coming into the UFC. Prodding actively with a jab, Marcin will casually add his right hand––variating between casting punches or even hammer fists––as he typically punctuates combinations with his lead leg(a common trait amongst Eastern European & Russian kickboxers).

Even when using his strikes to mask his clinch entries, Tybura has always shown a solid sense about where potential danger may be coming from, as he now does a better job of moving his head appropriately with his punches.

However, the Pole does display a tendency to dip his head dangerously low on his movements, especially when he begins to tire. This habit could be costly against a heavy-hitter like Arlovski, who just so happens to have a mean uppercut.

An increasingly measured striker as he has matured, Arlovski will keep at the ready with his pressure as he steadily awaits just outside of range with his right hand. Similar to many Winkeljohn-trained fighters, Arlovski will use the outside-range as a staging area for combinations executed as bombing runs.

Stopping power and accuracy aside, Arlovksi tends to get sloppy when he gets excited, as even his patent cross-uppercut continuums begin to retract-low and invite counter shots.

Despite the previously mention patience, Arlovski still shows a habit of chasing stunned opponents as this could cost him badly against Tybura––a fighter who has shown the ability to counter––as well as strike going backward.

Regardless of how things go standing, the battles inside of the clinch could be what makes or breaks this fight as far as entertainment goes. Meaning, that despite Arlovski’s aging and or limited skill sets, he has traditionally been one of the harder heavyweights to takedown throughout his career.

Possessing a solid base, Arlovski has typically elected to stifle as oppose to strike, taking the occasional outside trip if it is there. Even though Tybura demonstrated slicing elbows off of slick frames in his last fight, the Pole also found himself pinned to the cage throughout pockets of the fight.

Should Tybura not find any semblance of success striking or wrestling inside of the clinch––particularly in a three-round affair––then I could see Arlovski able to prolong his stifling ways and make for some lackluster action. But if this fight does hit the floor, then expect a sizeable edge to go to Tybura.

Although Arlovski was once known for his Sambo stylings, we have steadily seen him shy away from the armbars and heel-hooks he would go for early in his career. As the ground game in MMA has progressed, Arlovski has not shown to move with this trend as he primarily looks to stall for stand-ups and plays it safe.

Against Tybura, Arlovski will be facing one of the better transitional grapplers at heavyweight, especially when it comes to taking the back. An accoladed brown belt in Brazilian Jiu-jitsu, Tybura shows little issue translating his game to MMA as he passes with the appropriate pressure––and even implements wrestling-style cradles when they become available.

It’s hard to feel good about favorites in heavyweight MMA, but I have to agree with the oddsmakers as they opened Marcin Tybura as a 2-to-1 favorite. Unless Arlovski can gain respect standing and stifle Tybura inside of the clinch, then the aging veteran will likely be relying on one punch to get the job done.

And in these type of equations, I always have a hard time siding with single-shot opportunists, particularly if they are of the aging and low-volume variety. As someone who has followed Arlovski’s career for some time, I would love to see him come out on top. But that is not how this game works––and considering Arlovski has been dropped or stopped in his last six outings––I do not see this ending well, nor seeing the final bell.

Official Pick: Tybura – Inside the distance

Official Outcome: Tybura – Decision

Dong Hyun Kim (22-3-1)

Staple info:

  • Height: 6’1″ Age: 35 Weight: 170 lbs Reach: 76″
  • Last Fight: Decision win / Tarec Saffiedine (12-30-17)
  • Camp: Busan Team M.A.D. (Korea)
  • Stance/Striking Style: Southpaw / Boxing
  • Risk Management: Fair

Supplemental info:
+   Judo Black Belt
+   Multiple Judo Titles
+   Grappling Accolades
+   9 KO victories
+   2 Submission wins
+   4 first round finishes
+   KO power
+   Imposing pace & pressure
+   Improved overall striking
+/-Aggressive in exchanges
^   Will throw self out of position
+   Strong clinch game
^   Trips, body locks, takedowns
+   Superb top game
^   Solid transitions & positional rides
+/-2-1 against fellow UFC southpaws

Colby Covington (11-1)

Staple info:

  • Height: 5’11” Age: 29 Weight: 170 lbs Reach: 72″
  • Last Fight: Decision win / Bryan Barberena (12-17-16)
  • Camp: American Top Team (Florida)
  • Stance/Striking Style: Southpaw / Kickboxing
  • Risk Management: Good

Supplemental info:
+   2x NCAA All-American Wrestler
+   Pac-10 Wrestling Champion
+   Multiple Grappling Accolades
+   3 KO victories
+   4 Submission wins
+   3 first round finishes
+   Consistent pace & pressure
^   Well-conditioned athlete
+   Improved overall striking
^   Footwork, combos, head movement
+   Excellent takedown ability
^   Chains attempts / relentlessly  re-wrestles
+   Tremendous top game
^   Pins, strikes, cooks to submission
+   Superb wrist-rides & positional awareness
+/-1-0 against fellow UFC southpaws


As an unabashed fan of catch wrestling, the matchup of Dong Hyun Kim and Colby Covington is one that excites me.

An accoladed Judoka black belt, Dong Hyun Kim has been one of South Korea’s most consistent and accomplished Octagon competitors. With his only losses coming at the hands of the division’s best(Tyron Woodley, Demian Maia & Carlos Condit), Kim will look to remind the masses of his number seven ranking as he makes his way toward the Top-5.

Seeking the steal his spot on the board is the unranked Colby Covington, a welterweight who has quietly gone 6-1 on the promotion’s undercards, and is considered an unheralded contender in some circles. Now, slated for his first main card slot, Covington will attempt to use Kim’s veteran status as his stage to make a statement.

Starting off on the feet, we have the rare pairing of two southpaw strikers. Though this style of matchup can typically provide for unique intangibles, I do not feel it will have a drastic effect on this battle.

Despite each fighter only carrying a small sample size against fellow southpaw opposition, their striking tools show to translate without issue as the spirit of their game remains the same.

A lifelong wrestler, Colby Covington has steadily developed solid striking fundamentals that seemingly improves from fight-to-fight. From not crossing his feet to constantly resetting his angles on the outside, Covington will create lanes for his favored crosses and kicks off of his power side that is often set up from his jab.

Whether he is rolling off of his cross or changing his level, Covington demonstrates good head movement and strike awareness that will serve him well against an aggressive, dangerous opponent such as Kim.

Criticized early in his career for his slow burn approach of grappling and grinding, Kim has come out in subsequent years like a man on fire. Working diligently with the blossoming Busan Team M.A.D. in South Korea, we have seen Kim make improvements in his overall striking game as he has turned his aggression up to a 10.

Slipping his head offline as he throws his power shots, Kim will also unabashedly spin as he strikes off the breaks. A persistent pressure fighter by nature, Kim has a knack for getting the fight to the fence for better or for worse.

Though this approach usually favors the South Korean both stylistically and on the scorecards, Kim could find himself in trouble should Covington be the one controlling terms of the clinch.

As an experienced Judoka, Kim has always treated the clinch as his comfort zone––utilizing it to control or stifle––and of course, taking advantage of opportunities to throw opponents who mismanage their weight and balance. And once Kim hits his favored Uchi Mata, the South Korean will slide into a knee-on-belly position with the immediacy you only get from muscle memory.

Even if his resume is lacking the submission finishes that many would like to see, there is a lot to like about the Judoka’s game. An excellent transitional grappler, it is hard not to appreciate Kim’s positional flows and rides.

Maintaining his base through proper weight distribution, Kim will explode when necessary while still killing space when he needs to. Often trapping arms in transit, Kim shows no mercy when able to establish a gift wrap or crucifix position on his opposition.

However, despite Kim’s long tenor with the UFC, the South Korean has seldom faced any skilled wrestlers, as he has lost early––for one reason or another––to the only credible threats in those departments(Demian Maia & Tyron Woodley).

In Colby Covington, Kim will be facing an accoladed wrestler who has seamlessly translated his style into the cage and taken down every opponent in the process.

Possessing an excellent level changing double-leg, Covington could at the very least threaten an oncoming Kim, if not get him down altogether. And though Kim has his previously mentioned strengths inside of the clinch, he could be playing with fire as Covington possesses smooth takedown chains and a good sense of when to re-wrestle.

Should Covington get Kim down, the South Korean could experience more adversity than expected. An excellent grappler from topside, Covington uses everything from wrist-rides to leg and lever disruptions to keep his opposition’s balance and spirits broken.

Whether he is spiraling out his opponent’s base or striking them with impunity from positional rides and pins, Covington is steadily becoming a master chef when it comes to cooking his counterparts underneath him.

Although the South Korean’s record is nothing to scoff at(as I do feel that Kim is an underrated fighter), I also believe that the oddsmakers got this one right by opening Covington as the favorite.

Kim can certainly throw, land, and even starch Covington given the right circumstances, but I feel that the American’s underrated striking improvements––coupled with the threat of his level-changing double––will stifle the South Korean’s game, as I also see Kim’s over-aggressiveness leaving him open for takedowns.

Furthermore, I believe that Covington has a stylistic edge inside of the clinch that should grant him takedowns that parlay into punishing transitional stanzas for Kim, who will desperately be trying to get back to his feet. And if the South Korean sells out hard for something early, he could fade late as I ultimately see Covington dictating this fight’s terms––gaining momentum as it goes on––and possibly finding a finish in the final frame.

Official Pick: Covington – Decision

Official Outcome: Covington – Decision

Tarec Saffiedine (16-6)

Staple info:

  • Height: 5’9″ Age: 30 Weight: 170 lbs Reach: 70.5″
  • Last Fight: Decision loss / Dong Hyun Kim (12-30-17)
  • Camp: Tiger Muay Thai (Belgium)
  • Stance/Striking Style: Switch-stance / Kickboxing
  • Risk Management: Good

Supplemental info:
+   Strikeforce Welterweight Title
+   Black Belt BJJ & Karate
+   Amateur Kickboxing Experience
+   1 KO victory
+   5 Submission wins
+   5 first round finishes
+   Good footwork
^   Moves well laterally
+   Consistent pace & pressure
+   Effective jab from both sides
^   Conducts tempo / disrupts rhythm
+   Superb leg kick timing
+   Strong inside the clinch
^   Strikes well off the breaks
+   Underrated counter wrestling
+/-Tends to fight along the fence
+/-0-2 against UFC southpaws

Rafael Dos Anjos (25-9)

Staple info:

  • Height: 5’7″ Age: 32 Weight: 170 lbs Reach: 71″
  • Last Fight: Decision loss / Tony Ferguson (11-5-17)
  • Camp: RVCA/Gracie Barra (California)
  • Stance/Striking Style: Southpaw / Muay Thai
  • Risk Management: Good

Supplemental info:
+   Former UFC Lightweight Champion
+   Black Belt BJJ
+   Multiple BJJ Accolades
+   5 KO victories
+   8 Submission wins
+   8 first round finishes
+   Disciplined with pace & pressure
^   Aggressive but intelligent stalker
+   Hard & accurate left Thai kicks
^   Favors body & inside leg kicks
+   Solid left hand—right hook
^   Variates well to the body
+   Good takedowns against the fence
+   Improved get-up ability
+   Strong top game
^   Smashes & passes effectively
+/-Favors shell defense


Kicking off the main card on UFC Fight Pass is a potential welterweight war between Tarec Saffiedine and Rafael Dos Anjos.

The last man the hold the Strikeforce welterweight strap, Tarec Saffiedine has since had mixed results since entering the UFC. With injuries and inconsistencies seeming to be behind him, the Belgian-born veteran will have a chance to get back on track against a name opponent.

No stranger to Singapore, Rafael Dos Anjos will be doing more than just training this time around, as the former lightweight champion will also be attempting to get his name back in the win column. Moving up to welterweight for the first time, Dos Anjos will look to keep the trend positive for fighters who elect to forgo drastic weight cuts.

Starting off on the feet, we have a battle of two technical strikers who go about business in two different ways. As the more aggressive man, my money is on Dos Anjos to start and stay the forward mover in this fight.

A preternatural pressure fighter, Dos Anjos steadily stalks his opponent’s down, working behind feints until finding an opportunity to explode. Whether Dos Anjos is throwing his hard left hands or Thai kicks, the Brazilian will usually counterbalance his attack with his right hook as I suspect this may be the strike to watch for from the former champ.

Despite moving up a weight class, Dos Anjos is accustom to having to slip-and-rip on taller opposition. Considering that Dos Anjos likes to strike with his opposition so that he can follow their retractions inside, the Brazilian’s power will be most potent in these spaces.

However, Dos Anjos has some tendencies of his own that may make him vulnerable inside of the pocket. Often planting his heels to hold his ground, Dos Anjos tends to get wide on his strike retractions as he wings his shots from left-to-right.

Although Dos Anjos usually has the upper hand in these stanzas(being that he is bombing from below), he will still need to be mindful of Saffiedine’s checks on the way in, as well as his uppercuts and knees up the middle.

One of the more proficient stance switchers in the UFC, Saffiedine will effectively fire off jabs from both sides as this allows him to dictate and disrupt striking tempos. With Saffiedine’s patent leg kicks usually coming behind his straight punches, I suspect that we will see a similar approach to past fights from the Belgium-native.

With Saffiedine possessing the advantages at range, he will likely be trying to avoid pocket exchanges with his Brazilian counterpart. However, Saffiedine will need to be careful when exiting the pocket––given that his last three sustained knockdowns(or times he was stunned significantly)––have come off of the break.

That said, Saffiedine has shown some solid striking of his own off of the break, throwing head kicks smoothly as he exits. But considering both fighter’s acumen and awareness inside the clinch––their base, posture, and positional awareness often makes them hard to surprise in these spaces.

For that reason, I also think takedowns will be few and far between in this bout when you consider the counter wrestling improvements of each man.

In a matchup that should be competitive on paper, I feel that the oddsmakers are correct in favoring Dos Anjos, who I see having some edges in what may be a favorable matchup stylistically.

Even though Saffiedine more than has the skill and stamina to stick & move, he habitually finds himself operating from the outside which could be a detriment in this fight. A persistent pressure fighter by nature, Dos Anjos is most consistent with his combinations when his opposition is in between the fence and inner-black Octagon lines.

If Saffiedine chooses to circle outside to the Brazilian’s preferred kill zone, he will need to be as sharp as a sword. And though I see Belgian fighter’s takedown defense holding up, Dos Anjos’ pressure––along with Saffiedine potentially getting stuck on defense––could ultimately cost him on the scorecards once again.

Dos Anjos may run into some serious size issues in this weight class, but I do not think that factor burns him in this matchup. Aside from Saffiedine not being the biggest welterweight, Dos Anjos should have a solid speed and volume advantage, as I see the former lightweight champ taking a competitive, but clear decision.

Official Pick: Dos Anjos – Decision

Official Outcome: Dos Anjos – Decision

Preliminary Card Predictions:

  • Tuck def. Gomi
  • Harris def. Asker
  • Caceres def. Dy
  • Scoggins def. Sasaki
  • Jingliang def. Camacho
  • Doane def. Kwak
  • Inoue def. De Tomas
  • Pudilova def. Kim

Dan’s Plays:

(*like my breakdowns, these are for your reference & entertainment)

Props worth looking at(@

-Holm by TKO +136 (0.5 Unit)
-Dos Anjos by Decision -105 (0.5 Unit)
-Jingliang by TKO +110 (0.5 Unit)

-*Fun flier* Covington round 3 +1700 (.25 Unit)

Playable parlay pieces(My most confident favorites who are not out of my price range):

-Rafael Dos Anjos
-Justin Scoggins
-Colby Covington

Fights to avoid(the dog is likely live and or the line is very off):

-Kim vs Pudilova
-Kwak vs Doane
-Inoue vs De Tomas

For further technical and betting analysis, listen and subscribe to: The Protect Ya’ Neck Podcast and for future & past UFC breakdowns, stay tuned to:

  • trfe

    I’m seeing Scoggins -500 is that still within your price range?

    • Dan Tom

      Not any more, but, I did cover that and different angles you can go about playing that on the latest episode of The Protect Ya Neck Podcast.

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