Prediction for the fight Holly Holm vs Yana Kunitskaya

At the end of March, the UFC will travel to San Antonio, Texas for UFC on ESPN 43 at the AT&T Center, where former bantamweight champion Holly Holm and Russia's Fox, Yana Kunitskaya. Their meeting will take place on March 26, and will mark the return of the athletes after a long downtime. Both represent striking styles in the cage and are highly ranked, so a position in the top three of the 61.2 kg division will be at stake.

Holly Holm vs Yana Kunitskaya

Holly Holm

"The Preacher's Daughter", after the title races in two weight categories, entrenched in the TOP-3 of the lightest weight. Holly's background in sports is hard to overestimate: she was the WBF and WBAN world boxing champion, then she was awarded the WBC title, as well as a number of other prestigious awards.

After that, success in kickboxing awaited her - Holm became the IKF National Champion, and at a more mature age, after her debut in MMA, the athlete took the Legacy FC belts, and, as a result, the UFC, from the hands of the inimitable Ronda Rousey. There were attempts to succeed in 66 kg, but the American did not work out there.


Holly combines the best qualities of a drummer: strength, speed, good footwork and timing. She processes each tier of her opponents very well, changes floors, consistently breaking the defense, and defends herself effectively. Few managed to knock down the Hill, and due to her composure and strict adherence to the directions of the corner, she never goes for broke, scrupulously approaching all attacking actions.


Returning to the topic of the stalls, it is worth noting that only masters of their craft managed to cause problems on the zero floor of the Hill, and even then, after long rounds of exhausting struggle. The one-sidedness of the ex-champion made itself felt with age, but even with the actual lack of skills on earth, it is difficult to note her critical shortcomings, since she is impeccable in her craft.

The current form and readiness of the fighter

Holly's main problem is a late start in mixed martial arts, as she is now 41 years old. The athlete has lost 2 of the last 5 matches, losing to Amanda Nunes and Kathleen Vieira. However, she has victories over Megan Anderson, Raquel Pannington and Irene Aldana. Holm hasn't performed since May 2022, and given her last performance so far, there's no reason to believe she's in a precipitous decline. On the contrary, the young Viyera held her 5 rounds and reduced the meeting to a close decision. Therefore, we expect from the Preacher's Daughter, as always, a tactically reasonable, cautious fight, with an emphasis on standing work.

Holly Holm vs Yana Kunitskaya

Yana Kunitskaya

Russian woman - 6th number in the division rating. She also boasts a solid track record of accomplishments in various martial arts. Here is the status of the champion of Russia in Muay Thai and taekwondo, victory in the world championship in grappling, as well as a number of victories in international competitions in hand-to-hand combat and kickboxing.

Yana became the champion of the Invicta FC and MMA Bushido FC leagues, and in 2018 she tried to take the UFC belt in a fight with Christiana "Cyborg" Justino, but this attempt was a failure. Otherwise, Lisitsa has been fighting against rating rivals for several years in a row, demonstrating periodic success.


Kunitskaya prefers to work in the stand, although she has more tendencies to knitting rivals in clinches, as well as drying the body - there is a special emphasis there. The past in grappling did not greatly affect Yana's success in the stalls, but transfers, followed by a short control in her performance, are performed in almost every fight. Otherwise, the main emphasis in the tactics of the Russian woman is on attacking actions from a long distance.


The main critical problem for Kunitskaya is defense, moreover, at all levels. She stops no more than half of the takedowns, which caused defeats in a number of confrontations. And because of his stamina and perseverance, he always goes forward, receiving unwanted damage. Most importantly, this does not change from year to year, which means that neither the athlete herself, nor her corner, are concerned about the passing.

The current form and readiness of the fighter

Yana is 33 years old, and her statistics, if we take 5 extreme performances, consists of 3 wins and two losses. She lost to Aspen Ladd and Irene Aldana (both ahead of schedule), and defeated Marion Renault, Yulia Stolyarenko and Kathleen Viyera. But here it is necessary to mention that Kunitskaya had her last fight in July 2021, therefore there are no guarantees at all that she will return to business at least in the same form as two years ago. In addition, she will have to fight with the most experienced opponent, who, despite her age, sets a high pace in her fights. Simply put, the "Fox" is waiting for a serious test.

Comparative analysis

The anthropometric data of the girls are identical, and Holm boasts only 1 centimeter of superiority in arm span, which will not play any role. Less downtime on her part, as well as active footwork, will be much more important, and in this indicator, Yana will not be able to compete with her, because the speed of the American is still above all praise.

Most likely, this meeting will take place in a standing position, where Holly will take on the role of a counter-puncher, which is more familiar to her, and Kunitskaya will put pressure. Based on dry statistics, the Russian woman is not only more accurate, but also throws a lot more punches, however, she did not meet Holm-level strikers so often, and when this happened, early defeats appeared in her statistics.

It will not be possible to knock down, and even more so for a long time to keep the "Preacher's Daughter" on the ground with Yana's skills, because we will witness the battle of a bull and a matador. And in such scenarios, I have no doubt that Holly will be able to extract much more use from her opponent's attacks than she herself. Moreover, a long downtime is unlikely to allow the Russian woman to quickly join the battle, and she has only 3 rounds for this.

Holly Holm vs Yana Kunitskaya Prediction

We are waiting for a competitive match, which has very good chances to reach the 3rd round and even a referee's decision. Perseverance and pressure from Yana will continue even if she gets very tired - otherwise the Russian woman does not know how to fight. And when that happens, the damage she received will clearly show up on the scorecards. Control at the net will help fend off the situation, if it is possible to close the counterpart there at all.

For Holly, however, there are no significant threats in this confrontation, because she also knows how to take a hit, because shootouts at a distance, as well as clinches, will not become some kind of revelation for her. However, given the age of Holm, as well as the huge simple Kunitskaya, it is impossible to be 100% sure of any of them. Therefore, first of all, it is worth considering bets on the duration of the meeting, and after that, choose the favorite, which, by all indicators, is the ex-champion. Download 1xbet to your phone and place a bet on the favorite!

Prediction: Over (2.5) by rounds/Win Holly Holm.

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