Combat Sports

UFC 257: Eye vs Calderwood Keys to Victory

Image for UFC 257: Eye vs Calderwood Keys to Victory

The road to Eye vs Calderwood has been a beautiful one on this outing to fight island. First, Max Holloway basically sonned Calvin Kattar; headlining the first-ever MMA/UFC event on ABC television. Next, there was Chiesa and Magny. The two men put on a hell of a fight! At the end of the night, however, it was to be the improved striking and always on point grappling of Michael Chiesa that led him to edge out a decision victory. Now, we have UFC 257 on the horizon! Where the rematch between Conor Mcgregor and Dustin Poirier will take place. Not to mention, that Michael Chandler is making his much-anticipated debut against the always tough Dan “The Hangman” Hooker. Eye vs Calderwood

Before we see the rematch between Conor and DP, and before the much anticipated and sure-to-deliver war between Hooker and Chandler, we get Eye vs Calderwood. So dive in, sit back, and enjoy the breakdown! Eye vs Calderwood

Joanne Calderwood

Previously in line for a title shot against future Hall-of-Famer and Women’s Flyweight Champion Valentina “The Bullet” Schevchenko, Joanne Calderwood opted to fight Jennifer Maia at UFC Vegas 5 instead. Terrible choice, in hindsight. Joanne aka Jojo would go on to be submitted via armbar by Maia, who was in bottom guard and showed off her slick submission skills.

Let’s travel back though, before the Maia and Calderwood fight. Scotland’s first female professional Mixed Martial Artist, Joanne burst onto the scene back in 2012 and racked up 8 consecutive wins before getting signed by the UFC as an Ultimate Fighter contestant in 2014. So astonishingly, it took less than 2 years for Jojo to make it to the big leagues! Eye vs Calderwood

While many great things, “The Ultimate Fighter: A Champion Will Be Crowned” season winner she was not. Joanne Calderwood would reach the quarterfinals, before running into Rose Namajunas and losing via Kimura. Making her UFC debut against SeoHee Ham at the TUF season finale event, Jojo would win by decision. Along the way to the Eye vs Calderwood matchup, she would pick up big wins over names like Ariane Lipski (UFC Fight Night 143), Valerie Letourneau (UFC Fight Night 89), and most recently Andrea Lee (UFC 242).

Tough losses against names like Jessica Andrade (UFC 203), Katlyn Chookagian (UFC 238), and Cynthia Calvillo (UFC Fight Night 113) show that Joanne Calderwood has been in there with some of the very best. Much like her opponent, Jessica Eye.

Jessica Eye

Ever since making championship weight against Valentina Schevchenko, Jessica “Evil” Eye has taken some time off from doing that. By that, I’m talking about making weight. Coming in at 131 pounds against Viviane Araujo at UFC 245, Jessica was able to win the fight by decision. Leaving some critics to speculate, claiming the weight miss gave her an unfair advantage. Against Cynthia Calvillo at UFC Vegas 2 however, Eye would miss weight again! Coming in at 126.25 pounds, she would lose by decision this time out. Silencing the critics! No, but seriously, I’m just glad she made weight for this fight. Eye vs Calderwood

Eye vs Calderwood is a tremendous fight, and we’re almost to the keys to victory! Let’s just take a quick glance back at the storied career of Jessica Eye.

Making her pro debut in 2010, she had a brief stint in Ring Of Combat where she won the 130-pound lbs women’s championship. Signing with Bellator in 2011, she was on to bigger and better things. I wonder what she would have told her former self, ahead of this Eye vs Calderwood fight on this legendary UFC 257 card?

In 2013, she signed with the UFC. “Evil” Eye would go on to have many battles against some of the greatest women fighters we’ve seen. With notable losses to Miesha Tate (UFC on Fox 16), Bethe Correia (UFC 203), and Valentina Schevchenko (UFC 238). Now now, I’m not saying Bethe Correia is one of the greats, calm down will ya?! I’m just saying, Eye vs Calderwood will truly be a battle between two deadly veterans. Jessica also has wins over names like Jessica Rose Clark (UFC Fight Night 132), Katlyn Chookagian (UFC 231), and Viviane Araujo (UFC 245).

Eye vs Calderwood Keys to Victory

Jessica Eye

An all-around dangerous fighter, Jessica “Evil” Eye could win this one anywhere. However, the best route to victory would probably be thru the grappling realm, judging from her performance against Cynthia Calvillo. I don’t know if Cynthia is just lightning fast, or if Jessica is just a little slow for the division, but it appeared she really lacked the quickness and reflexes to hang in there with a fast, competent striker like Calvillo. So, that leads me to my first key: Make it an MMA match! This is the key to Jessica Eye’s success in my opinion.

If she can beautifully transition from striking, to the clinch, and to the takedown, or any combination of those three repeatedly, I think Calderwood is in for a long night. Jessica Eye is really gritty, almost a grinder I’d say. A fighter who can keep a very solid pace and give us an exciting match!

Next key: Don’t let Calderwood get in the flow. Now, that one might seem a little odd, but allow me to explain. Jessica Eye can push a solid pace, but Jojo can too. If anything, she’s statistically a lot more active than “Evil” Eye. Averaging 6.17 significant strikes landed per minute with a 48% accuracy, Calderwood almost doubles the output of Jessica. Who averages 3.65 significant strikes landed per minute, with a 36% accuracy rate.

So, like I was saying, If I’m Jessica Eye, I’m looking to disrupt my opponent and her offense. I don’t want her to get in the zone, and beat me just off the sheer volume. So, I’m choosing to slow her down. How can I do that? Engaging in the clinch, and pressing her up against the cage. Taking her down, and keeping her there. Or, even something as simple as to control the range via footwork. Speaking of the range before we move on, I believe Jessica Eye will look to stay in the pocket, and out of kicking range.

Joanne Calderwood

More of a kicker, with a game built on teep and snap kicks, this could be her way to victory here in the Eye vs Calderwood fight. I believe the keys to victory for Jojo are pretty few in number, and straight forward. Cynthia Calvillo almost gave everyone the golden key to beating Jessica Eye, and unless “Evil” Eye has made meaningful improvement, it could happen again.

Cynthia Calvillo really won that fight with her footwork and movement. Her timed takedowns were also beautiful, and you could tell she was in the zone. This leads me to my keys for Jojo. Utilize the footwork, stay circling, stay in kicking range, and maybe test out the grappling. This is a realm where Jojo has really shown some improvement, despite getting caught by Maia (who is a world-class grappler by the way). Eye vs Calderwood

Anyways, Calderwood just needs to find her range and stick to it. If she can work in the takedowns and give another thing for Jessica Eye to be worried about, that’s even better. Jojo should fire that teep when Eye attempts to rush in, and also light up the legs of Jessica. Throwing 3-4 strike combos with her hands quickly, before darting back out to kicking range and circling.

Eye vs Calderwood Prediction

So, there you have it, folks! My Keys to Victory! Now, as for my prediction, I believe this one is hard to call. Whichever lady can better execute their gameplan, takes it in my opinion. I don’t think it’ll be a close fight though. I think whichever fighter wins, they will do so very dominantly. Therefore, I’ve got to go with Joanne Calderwood via TKO in rd. 3! Now, I do also want to say. I believe if Jojo does lose, it’ll be because she gets dominated by the grappling of Jessica Eye. That’s the thing about this sport, it can end in so many ways! Until next time fight fans, and please, enjoy the fights!

Featured Image Credits to Embed from Getty Images and Embed from Getty Images

Follow me on Twitter at @MmaMakoa_ and follow us @OT_Heroics and @OTHeroicsMMA for more great content!

Also, be sure to check out the Overtime Heroics Forums page to join in on the discussion! 

Share this article

Combat Sports and Motorsports Editor. Staff Writer for Overtime Heroics MMA. Named first ever ‘Writer of the Month’ in January 2021 for OTH MMA.