MMA fighting

How to bet this UFC 265 Prelim (Saturday August 7th)

Kowalkiewicz vs Penne odds

Kowalkiewicz odds -126
Penne Odds +108
More less 2.5 (-435 / +300)
Place Toyota Center
Time 8 p.m. ET
Channel ESPN
Friday odds and via FanDuel.

The second women’s card fight features two straw weights, Karolina Kowalkiewicz and Jessica Penne. At 115 pounds, this fight should be very competitive, although neither fighters come particularly close to a title shot.

However, Kowalkiewicz took the victory over a young “Thug” Rose Namajunas in 2016. Rose has obviously improved now and is the current champion, but this victory surely shines on Kowalkiewicz’s record.

Let’s break down where the value is in this preliminary match.

Tale of the Band

Kowalkiewicz Penne
Record 12-6 13-6
Avg. Fight time 13:38 12:13
Height 5’3 ″ 5’5 ″
Weight (lbs) 115 pounds 115 pounds
Range (inch) 64 ″ 67 ″
Position Orthodox Orthodox
Date of Birth 10/15/85 01/30/83
Sig keystrokes per minute 5.27 2.40
SS precision 39% 33%
SS absorbed per minute 5.65 4.45
SS Defense 56% 48%
Average withdrawals 0.10 1.50
TD Acc 12% 23%
TD Def 75% 42%
Submission method 0.1 0.6

Penne generally has a big advantage in this division. This one will be less pronounced than usual, Karolina is 5 feet 3 inches against 5 feet 5 for Penne.

Both fighters have really struggled lately. Kowalkiewicz has lost four consecutive fights and Penne has lost three of four. Penne also received a decisive victory in his last fight against Loopy Godinez (most people won that fight to Godinez). Essentially, both fighters need a win.

Penne was once considered a future title contender. She was actually tied (-115) with Jessica Andrade at UFC 199. She took four years off due to two USADA doping violations. It is absolutely a source of concern for the future.

In Penne’s last fight, I felt like she had been saved by poor decision-making from Godinez who was making her UFC debut and was 5 inches shorter than Penne. Cardio was an issue for Penne and Godinez continued to allow him to stand against the cage in a low volume clinch setting. If pushed, I feel like Penne would have faded under the pressure.

Additionally, despite a victory for Penne – 75.3% of fans won this fight to Godinez – as well as 11 of 17 MMA media scorers according to MMA decisions.

Kowalkiewicz should be a step up in the competition, certainly in the hitting department. She has a solid jab and the footwork to top her opponents with several wins of over 100 important strikes to her name.

It’s been tough for Kowalkiewicz lately. Their losses to Michelle Waterson and Jessica Andrade were tough, but they are two real contenders in this division. Penne has not faced a competitor since 2016.

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Kowalkiewicz vs. Penne Pick

I usually erase fighters who have tested positive for performance enhancing supplements. According to MMA Fighting, Penne has been suspended twice by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) for anabolic agents.

Karolina has fought the cream of the crop in the division and although she has struggled recently I think she is more battle proven and won’t let Penne get away with it when her cardio starts to deteriorate.

Kowalkiewicz’s ideal fight is to separate Jessica with a high volume strike. A different type of fight than Penne versus Godinez who was struggling with heavy.

Penne is a solid grappler – averaging 1.5 kills every 15 minutes. It is his path to victory in every fight.

When Penne cannot land, she is more or less doomed. She has been beaten in her last five fights.

Additionally, Karolina should be able to use the larger cage to her advantage. As Sean Zerillo detailed in April, the larger cage will help fighters who need room to operate, which will lead to more decisions.

Karolina presents herself as needing space to operate and achieve victories. Karolina is a -126 favorite this weekend at FanDuel. In my opinion, she could be bigger as she opened as a -180 favorite.

I see good value in Karolina’s silver line as well as her decision prop at +120 on PointsBet. I would bet up to +110, but lower down I would prefer the moneyline, which is still reasonably priced.

The choice : Kowalkiewicz ML -126

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