Fantasy Fights

Intelligent, unique MMA analysis

UFC Power Rankings: Women’s Bantamweight Division

This division might as well be known as the “Ronda Rousey show.” If we’re at the point where contenders like Alexis Davis and Cat Zingano are getting taken care of in less than 20 seconds, then I’m not even going to bother speculating about who Rousey’s toughest challengers might be.

The below rankings should probably not be taken too seriously. Even though the women’s bantamweight division has been around a couple years now, it’s still largely being developed and most of the competitors (including Rousey) haven’t had enough fight time for their Fight Metric data to be reliable.

Two types of fighters are being overrated in the below ranking: fighters who are particularly young (Jessica Andrade, Larissa Pacheco, Julianna Pena to a lesser extent) and fighters who have scored blowout wins over a poorly ranked opponent (Andrade over Rosi Sexton, Pena over Jessica Rakoczy, Jessamyn Duke over Peggy Morgan). On the flip side, older fighters like Marion Reneau are probably being quite a bit underrated.

With that having been said, my model has been very successful against the betting lines so far, and so I’m not inclined to start changing things.

Along with the overall rating for each fighter, I’m now including ratings for all five categories my model uses to make predictions: significant strikes, knockdowns, takedowns, age, and Fight Matrix rating. These ratings are being presented as Z-scores, which represent the number of standard deviations away from the mean.

Rank Fighter Overall Significant Strikes Knockdowns Takedowns Age Fight Matrix rating
 1 Ronda Rousey +1.76 +0.66 +1.75 +2.45 +0.21 +3.16
 2 Sarah Kaufman +1.13 +2.30 -0.53 +0.35 -0.06 +0.93
 3 Julianna Pena +0.64 +0.77 -0.42 +0.89 +1.01  +0.25
 4 Jessica Andrade +0.56 +0.93 +0.87 -0.02 +1.55 -0.15
 5 Bethe Correia +0.44 +1.60 -0.51 -0.23 -0.60 +0.15
 6 Alexis Davis +0.38 +0.15 -0.06 +0.03 -0.33 +1.11
 7 Cat Zingano +0.33 +0.58 -0.30 -0.03 -0.87 +0.88
 8 Jessica Eye +0.32 +0.30 -0.10 -0.50 +0.21 +0.71
 9 Raquel Pennington +0.27 +0.55 -0.19 +0.02 +0.74 -0.15
 10 Sara McMann +0.24 +0.03 -0.01 +2.22 -1.40 +0.54
 11 Miesha Tate +0.16 +0.13 -1.68 -1.97 +0.21 +1.08
 12 Liz Carmouche +0.14 +0.32 -0.15 +1.23 -0.33 -0.19
 13 Amanda Nunes +0.08 +0.06 -0.02 +0.31 +0.74 -0.31
 14 Larissa Pacheco +0.02 -0.35 +0.20 -0.46 +2.36 -0.68
 15 Sarah Moras -0.04 +0.13 -0.05 -0.76 +0.74 -0.31
 16 Marion Reneau -0.05 +1.18 -3.03 +0.06 -2.21 +0.08
 17 Holly Holm -0.11 +0.10 -0.05 +0.05 -1.14 +0.18
 18 Rin Nakai -0.16 -0.83 +0.48 +0.74 +0.48 -0.23
 19 Jessamyn Duke -0.26 +0.43 -1.68 +0.62 +0.21 -1.35
 20 Lauren Murphy -0.26 +0.22 -0.11 -1.91 -0.60 +0.11
 21 Germaine de Randamie -0.26 +0.20 -0.10 -1.04 -0.33 -0.35
 22 Milana Dudieva -0.27 -0.25 +0.20 +0.77 +1.01 -1.35
 23 Ashlee Evans-Smith -0.34 +0.19 -0.10 -0.02 +0.48 -1.35
 24 Elizabeth Phillips -0.65 -0.41 +0.16 -0.55 +0.21 -1.35
 25 Shayna Baszler -1.21 -1.60 +0.73 +0.45 -1.40 -1.35
 26 Leslie Smith -1.22 -3.12 +2.19 -0.27 -0.87 +0.07
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2 responses to “UFC Power Rankings: Women’s Bantamweight Division

  1. r.mattioli March 11, 2015 at 8:09 pm

    yeah…I was going to mention reneau before reading deeper into the write-up….looks to be well-rounded and hard to intimidate(she seems fearless and intent on making her mark…she`s no kid and time is not on her side)….
    have to say that because rousey has rendered(or more accurately “rent asunder”) the bantam division a moot point,i`m more a fan of the strawweights….it`s a solid little division with the polish girl,gadelha and several others legit threats….competitive….I see van zant and felice herrig are fighting soon…..hmmmm….me likey…lol

    btw…I just had to jump on dos anjos at +375…I think those odds are way out of whack…dos anjos is dangerous and may be the most improved ufc fighter from the time he entered to present day…he even looks physically different….should be a stand-up fight and if pettis doesn`t clip him with a flashy kick,i really think dos anjos is “live” in a 5 round fight….love the guy`s well roundedness,grit, stamina and newly found power….and HIS kicks are nothing to sneeze at……

    great fight…actually a quality card….should be fun watching matt brown vs Hendricks,the females and the ufc debut of conor McGregor vanquisher joe duffy…. ..

    • David Williams March 11, 2015 at 10:43 pm

      You’ll like what I have to say about the Pettis-Dos Anjos fight. I’ll just spoil right now that I agree with you, the odds on Dos Anjos are just crazy. He’s really developed into a well-rounded fighter at a high level. I can’t tell if the lopsided odds are because people are overrating Pettis or underrating Dos Anjos, but I suspect it’s a little of both.

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