December’s pay-per-view card just got much more exciting as future flyweight stars Maycee Barber (9-2-0 4-2-0 UFC) and Montana De La Rosa (12-6-1 5-2-1 UFC) are set to square off on December 11 at UFC 269.
News of this fight’s announcement first came via Nolan King and Farrah Hannoun. De La Rosa broke the news via MMA Junkie’s Instagram Live, and two anonymous sources inside the UFC confirmed that paperwork had been signed on both sides. De La Rosa herself expressed anticipation for the bout, saying: “We’re both top 15. I’m really excited to start climbing the rankings.”
De La Rosa and Barber’s Careers Collide
Maycee Barber has been one of the more outspoken fighters on the UFC roster, setting a goal that she would become the youngest UFC champion, breaking Jon Jones’ record of 23 years old when he defeated Shogun Rua to claim the 205-pound title. This claim by Barber was certainly within reach according to some, but she dropped two unanimous decisions to Roxanne Modafferi and Alexa Grasso, including one where she suffered a torn ACL against Modafferi.
Her last fight was a controversial split decision win against a fellow rising star in Miranda Maverick which set her on the winning path yet again. Her clash with De La Rosa marks a turning point in her career: Barber is nowhere near being released, but she will need to make a statement to prove that she is still the prospect everyone was excited about before her entry into the UFC.
Montana De La Rosa sees herself in a similar position to her opponent, as she has gone 1-1-1 in her last three fights, albeit against some tough competition. She lost to Viviane Araujo, drew against Mayra Bueno Silva, and won her most recent fight against Ariane Lipski by TKO. De La Rosa likely needs a standout win against a hot prospect to stay relevant in the revolving door that is the women’s bantamweight division.
Keys to the Fight
This fight should be an interesting one, at least stylistically. In Barber’s last bout she found some success on the feet against Miranda Maverick but was dominated from range as she couldn’t quite bounce in and out with combinations. She turned to the clinch and connected with good shots, as well as landing a takedown, which is what she should look to do against De La Rosa. Barber seems to excel in these dirty boxing situations, and would likely need to stay there or at range against a grappling-heavy fighter in De La Rosa.
De La Rosa is a consummate grappler, having won the majority of her UFC bouts by submission. For her to earn the victory she should look to avoid striking situations: Barber isn’t the best, but can certainly hold her own at range. Her best bet would be to wrestle with Barber, as she has fantastic jiujitsu and submission offense. As long as she can avoid ground-and-pound and clinch situations against Barber, she should find something going her way.
Here’s how the rest of the UFC 269 card stacks up so far:
- Women’s Bantamweight Title Bout: Amanda Nunes vs. Julianna Pena
- Bantamweight Bout: Cody Garbrandt vs. Kai Kara-France
- Women’s Flyweight Bout: Priscila Cachoeira vs. Gillian Robertson
- Women’s Bantamweight Bout: Maycee Barber vs. Montana De La Rosa
How do you see Maycee Barber vs. Montana De La Rosa playing out? Feel free to let us know in the comments!
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