Sunday, April 24, 2016
Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Carla Esparza vs Juliana Lima
Here's the match video of Carla Esparza vs Juliana Lima from last night's UFC show in Las Vegas. it aired on the prelims on Fox Sports 1 in the US and TSN in Canada. Of course Carla was the first UFC Strawweight Champion. After she lost the title to Joanna Jedrzejczyk, Carla had shoulder surgery and this was her first fight since the surgery. Carla is a four time All American wrestler but her striking is not up to par. You never know what a fighter will be like after major surgery. I think Juliana was a reasonable opponent for Carla's return. Juliana is 2-1 in the UFC but her wins were not impressive. I don't think she's very good at anything. It's funny because Joe Rogan was talking about Juliana's attributes during the fight and it sounded like he was talking about someone else. I thought it was his worst commentary. The fight went as I expected. Afterwards plenty of fans complained that the fight was boring. But all of Carla's fights are boring. She's a grinder who occasionally wins by submission if the opponent makes a mistake. Carla took Juliana down in all three rounds. She never came close to a finish as Juliana defended well. Juliana even scored with a few upkicks. But upkicks don't win fights and Juliana needed to generate a more sustained offense. Juliana did get top position near the end of round three. But she lost the first two rounds and she needed a finish. Too little, too late. I scored the fight 30-27 for Carla and so did the judges. I think Carla needs to raise her game if she wants to be a title contender again. I don't know if she can do that. Her other big flaw which came up in post fight interviews is she thinks too much and psyches herself out. Sometimes fighters need to resort to natural instinct and leave the fight analysis to guys like me. She tends to overthink strategy and sometimes it negatively affects her performance. Check out the fight for yourself!