Prospect in the Spotlight (Nov 6-7): Pauline Macias

Introduction

Wednesday, November 4th, American strawweight prospect Pauline Macias will be in action on Dana White’s Contender Series, where she will be looking to continue her undefeated streak against Gloria de Paula. She will be looking for another win, as Macias looks to impress the UFC brass in an attempt to earn a contract. She represents FactoryX Muay Thai, a respected camp in MMA. Let’s take a closer look at this prospect as this week’s “Prospect Spotlight.”

Strengths

Takedowns/Grappling: Macias’ background is in judo and she’s competed at the international level, showing she was outstanding in that sport. Macias trained with fellow judoka Ronda Rousey as well, showing that she ran with the best the country had to offer. In terms of her MMA stylings, her best skills come from that judo background. She’s excellent in the clinch and against the cage. Her throws and trips are top notch, so getting in close is a must for Macias. She’s physically strong, especially in the core/lower body. Her takedown defense is also top notch. When she does get her opponents on the mat, her advancement to dangerous positions is impressive. She’s positionally sounds and will get to a spot where she’s able to fish for a submission. She likes the back mount, but like Rousey, also likes the armbar.

Needs Improvement

Striking: Macias has been training with FactoryX Muay Thai for good reason; her striking needs a lot of work. Technically, she is flat footed much of the time and does not gauge distance well. She’s also not super active in her attack on the feet. On top of that, she doesn’t have a lot of variety in her attacks, opting to mostly throw straight punches. She also doesn’t throw a lot of kicks, which could be beneficial. She does not string combinations consistently, showing herself to be a one or two punch striker. When she does try to get away from the straight punches, she telegraphs and wings those hooks and overhands. The biggest problem I see is that she finds herself far too willing to engage in glorified boxing matches, as opposed to using her dominant grappling.

Outlook

UFC Midcarder: Right now, I would definitely say Macias makes the UFC roster, especially given that she’s just 24 years old. That says, she is still pretty green and needs some work. Her striking needs a lot of improvement, especially when you step up into the major leagues against complete fighters that will be able to outstrike her and defend takedowns. In a couple years, she could be really good, though. I don’t think she will ever be champion, but she will gets some big wins on her resume.

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