Prospect in the Spotlight (Jan 20-21): Kristina Williams

Introduction

Wednesday, January 18th, American flyweight prospect Kristina Williams will be in action for Invicta, where she will be looking continue her winning ways against Ketlen Souza. She will be looking for another win, as Williams looks to secure the flyweight championship and inch closer to a contract with the UFC. She represents The Forge MMA, a smaller camp in MMA. Let’s take a closer look at this prospect as this week’s “Prospect Spotlight.”

Strengths

Striking: Williams’ biggest strength is her striking, as she’s proven in most of her fights. She has good movement on the feet, both laterally and in-and-out. She’s light on her fight and good at sticking and moving. She is technically sound, possessing good kicks and combinations with her hands. She likes to land in volume, adding up points and damage while doing so. Her pro debut saw her break the nose of boxing world champion Heather Hardy. That’s her only stoppage from strikes as a pro, but that does not mean she does not accumulate damage on her opponents when scoring victories.

Quality of Opponents/Experience: Williams has not taken many gimmes as a professional, even from her pro debut. As mentioned, she defeated boxing world champ Heather Hardy in her pro MMA debut. In her sophomore outing, she bested former Invicta Champion and current UFC fighter Emily Ducote. Her most recent win came over 12-fight veteran Liana Pirosin, which earned her this title shot. Plus, despite losing, she’s fought valiantly against former kickboxing world champion Denise Kielholtz and former Bellator Champion Juliana Velasquez, as well as UFC vet Valerie Letourneau. Williams doesn’t take easy fights.

Needs Improvement

Defensive Grappling: While Williams has good takedown defense and is good at keeping off her back, when she does get taken to the ground, she can be exposed by a superior grappler. In her loss to Velasquez, she was grounded early and often, with Velasquez advancing her position on the mat and hammering Williams with ground-and-pound. Also, in her loss to Kielholtz, she was defeated by rear-naked choke, which is even more shocking given Kielholtz is not really known for her grappling.

Outlook

UFC Midcarder: Williams has really improved since her stint with Bellator and has looked great with Invicta. She’s already 2-0 under the promotion, besting tough striker Flore Hani and the aforementioned experienced Pirosin. She’s a step away from the UFC, but first, she needs to get past experienced top prospect Ketlen Souza, who will be no pushover. Souza likes to bang as well, so it could be quite the entertaining bout. A win for Williams could get her right to the UFC roster, where she’d be a continued tough out.

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