Polyana Viana Mota might have been the favorite heading in, but JJ Aldrich proved too much for the Brazilian to handle as she cruised to a unanimous decision win at UFC 227 on Saturday night.
In women’s strawweight action at UFC 227 in Los Angeles on Saturday night, Brazil’s Polyana Viana Mota looked to build on a six fight win streak, most of which came outside of the UFC. Against the gritty JJ Aldrich, she’d face a fighter on a two-fight win streak in the UFC who seemed to be perennially overlooked by pundits.
Polyana Viana stayed far on the outside early, backing off before firing off a leg kick, then another. Clearly looking to keep Aldrich at range, the American was going to have to find a way to close the distance — without eating one of those heavy kicks. They’d clinch against the cage, with Polyana initially in control before JJ Aldrich turned her. However, Aldrich would get the fight to the ground, and finish the round on top and in control.
Aldrich was looking to land a right hand counter in round two, which she did early. Viana would work for a judo throw when they clinched, but could not get the American down. Instead, Aldrich pressed her up against the fence, but with little happening in the way of action, ref Herb Dean urged them to get active. The end result, they broke, off which JJ Aldrich scored with a right hand. Polyana landed a kick to the body, and later hit a straight shot of her own. Aldrich answered with a left. Aldrich continued to eat kicks, but found a home for her jab. Viana then changed levels under a punch and threw Aldrich to the ground. The Brazilian quickly had a hook in, then transitioned to the top, in half guard then quickly mounting. She went after an arm, but Aldrich scrambled out and got on top. For the second straight round, Aldrich finished the frame on top.
In round three, JJ Aldrich’s striking was the difference early. She caught Viana at least a couple of times, as the Brazilian left herself open, chin up. Aldrich would then go to the ground when Viana pulled guard. Viana however was not looking for a submission, instead trying to land punches and elbows from the bottom, then simply holding on. Back on the feet in the final minute, Aldrich continued to press forward, dictating the pace. Viana took a look at the clock, clearly fading. Aldrich would land a couple of final blows before the bell sounded to end the bout, clearly ahead on the scorecards.
— UFC Canada (@UFC_CA) August 5, 2018
JJ Aldrich def. Polyana Viana by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-27)