Rodriguez vs Lemos Odds: Brazilian Strikers Play Chess

Rodriguez and Lemos Fight for Title Shot

Another women’s strawweight bout headlines UFC Fight Night on Saturday. This time, Marina Rodriguez pits her four-fight winning streak against fellow Brazilian Amanda Lemos. If the Rodriguez vs Lemos odds proves accurate, Rodriguez should beat Lemos and be next in line for a title shot. It will be hard to deny her considering her streak and the prospect of building a new star in the division. But to do that, she’ll have to outwit Lemos.

Rodriguez vs Lemos Fight Info

Fighters: Marina Rodriguez (16-1-2) vs Amanda Lemos (12-2-1)
Location: UFC Apex, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Streaming: Live Stream Sports

Rodriguez is Maturing Like a Top-Tier Prospect

Rodriguez burst into the UFC as a blue-chip prospect off of Dana White’s Contender Series in Brazil. She made quick work of her opponent and proved herself to be a dangerous striker. But after six fights, Rodriguez’s UFC record stood at 3-1-2 thanks to a notable weakness; grappling.

The 35-year-old failed to beat Randa Markos and Cynthia Calvillo then dropped a close decision to the current champion Carla Esparza as the favorite. Since then, she’s worked on her defensive wrestling. She managed to stay upright for the most part against Xiaonan while also stuffing seven of Mackenzie Dern’s eight takedown attempts.

Rodriguez is working her way to a title shot also to gain a rematch against the only fighter to have beaten her; Esparza.

“To become the No. 3-ranked strawweight in the UFC wasn’t easy,” Rodriguez told Sherdog. “I only faced the proven best fighters in the division. I have the one loss on my résumé to Esparza, but I’m sure I’ll get to avenge it. I hope it’s for the belt.”

Rodriguez fought through a tough UFC schedule. Eight of her nine opponents were ranked in the top 15, two were former champions, and four had just one loss or fewer.

“It wasn’t perfect, but I’ve had a brilliant trajectory in the UFC. It was very well planned and executed, against the best in the world. Today I have a new challenge in Amanda Lemos. The UFC offered me one more opponent before I could fight for the belt. So, my focus is completely on this fight now. I need to win in any way possible, so I can demand my title shot.”

Lemos Needs Signature Victory

Just as she seemed on the cusp of a title shot, Lemos found herself on the wrong end of a highlight reel submission. But the veteran shook it off and bounced back with a submission victory of her own and one over a longtime contender in Michelle. Waterson-Gomez. Now, Lemos has another shot at a signature victory if she can get past Rodriguez with UFC this weekend.

Lemos, currently ranked seventh at strawweight, was tearing through the division. She won three of her first four fights via a finish – two came by way of brutal knockouts. She controversially defeated Angela Hill though she did do more damage in the fight as she recorded the harder shots including a knockdown.

But the stakes are different this time. The Rodriguez vs Lemos odds posit her as the underdog so a win over Rodriguez, who has been streaking, should do more for her resume than a narrow decision over a gatekeeper in the UFC. What’s more, if Lemos can finish Rodriguez, she may get the next shot.

“She likes to leave it to the judges most of the time,” said Lemos. “I don’t. I like to finish fights. I trained a lot to stop her game – to keep her from scoring points throughout the rounds and finish her.”

Maybe Lemos is just talking smack. But she can’t rely purely on her power to stop Rodriguez, who is just as prolific of a striker as she is. Lemos will have to play the “long game” and beat Rodriguez. Either way, she can turn the Rodriguez vs Lemos odds upside down with a win.

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