Bellator 289 is this week and will have a stacked main card for the fans. In the co-main slot, a rematch for the women’s flyweight title will occur between MMA veteran Liz Carmouche (17-7) and Juliana Velasquez (12-1).
After a controversial stoppage in their first meeting, Velasquez will look to get her Bellator title back.
Read along for the Carmouche vs. Velasquez betting analysis and prediction leading up to this Friday, December 9th, at Bellator 289.
Last Fight Record
These two fought each other in their last appearance inside the Bellator cage. Liz Carmouche walked away with a TKO victory late in the 4th round over Velasquez. This fight took place back in April of 2022.
Carmouche vs. Velasquez Betting Analysis
Carmouche has been fighting at the highest level for a very long time. She fought Ronda Rousey in the first-ever UFC women’s fight, which was for the inaugural UFC women’s bantamweight title.
She has fought literally every top fighter in her weight class since then. She beat Valentina Shevchenko over a decade ago, then went on to fight killers like:
This is an experience that goes a long way in a fighter’s life and helps in a lot of situations that Carmouche gets into in the Bellator cage.
The 38-year-old went on to currently be 4-0 in Bellator, including three finishes. She has 11 finishes in her 17-win career so far and seems to be fighting at a very high level.
Carmouche is a great all-around fighter. She loves to wrestle, averaging 2.57 takedowns per 15 minutes in her 14-fight UFC career.
Velasquez has a lot of anger inside her from the last fight. That was the first blemish on her MMA record, and she did not take it very well.
She was ahead on all three of the judges’ scorecards leading up to that 4th round and in a good position to win a decision over Carmouche in April. She has 4 KO’s and one submission win in her 12-win MMA career.
Just like her opponent, Velasquez has formed a very well-rounded skillset where she can win fights by striking and still have the elite skill to get the job done and improve positions on the ground.
With a lack of stats from Velasquez, it is tough to break her down analytically. In Bellator, it seems like she has really been bigger and stronger than all her opponents leading up to the first fight with Carmouche. This is truly the best matchup to make in the Bellator flyweight division.
Liz Carmouche vs. Juliana Velasquez Betting Preview
Bellator odds are very interesting leading up to the rematch. Liz Carmouche is a +145 underdog as the reigning champion, a bigger underdog than she was in their first fight.
This is the biggest underdog odds that Carmouche has had in her Bellator career.
Velasquez is the -175 betting favorite going into Bellator 289. She presented many issues for Carmouche in their first meeting, being up 3-0 on two of the scorecards going into that 4th round.
The interesting thing about these odds is that Carmouche did score a great takedown in the 4th and got Velasquez in a crucifix.
Even though the stoppage was debatably too soon, Velasquez was in a very compromising position and could have potentially been damaged very badly if the fight went on longer. There was only 13 second left in the round, though.
This is an exciting matchup because of the unknown. If that fight goes on and Velasquez survives to see the 5th round, does the momentum shift in Carmouche’s favor, and she gets the finish in the 5th round? This Friday is the opportunity for both women to show who is the best flyweight in Bellator.
In the first fight, Carmouche seemed to be hesitant to shoot for takedowns. When she did, they were successful.
Carmouche also clearly has a game plan of kicking Velasquez in the calves to compromise her lead leg out of that southpaw stance, but it seemed that Velasquez was very durable and did a pretty good job checking those kicks.
If Carmouche plays the striking game with Velasquez as much as she did in the first fight, it will be a tough night for her.
Velasquez has very linear striking; by that, I mean she throws a lot of left hands straight down the middle and used her front kick to the body as a big weapon in the cage.
Carmouche vs. Velasquez betting analyses will vary around the MMA community. There seem to be a lot of different opinions on the stoppage and how well Carmouche performed on that night in April.
Liz Carmouche vs. Juliana Velasquez Betting Predictions
This is going to be a very competitive rematch for the Bellator title. Both fighters have about 20 minutes of action to dissect and learn from facing each other. There will be changes made and game plans set for this second meeting.
For an official Carmouche vs. Velasquez betting prediction: Carmouche will defend her belt.
Carmouche is so experienced, and she is going to learn from that last fight and perform much better in the earlier rounds.
She will mix up her striking to set up takedowns because she knows she will be the better wrestler and can get into some very good positions while on the ground.
Who to Bet On?
MMA odds also have the long-time veteran as an underdog, which is a perfect opportunity to cash out on a bet. The +145 odds have a lot of value in someone as solid as Carmouche.
Look for more leg kicks, takedowns, and more technical striking from Carmouche to get into positions where she can dominate from. A ground-and-pound finish in the later rounds is very possible again in this one.