Larissa Pacheco predicts 3 straight wins over Kayla Harrison: ‘I don’t see any evolution’ since 2019

Larissa Pacheco don’t think his rivalry with Kayla Harrison ends at the 2022 PFL Championship event on Friday in New York.

This week Free exchange podcast, Pacheco said she expects to share the cage with the two-time Olympic gold medalist at least twice more on the road.

“I believe we will see each other again at some point or in any promotion,” she said. ” And of course, [the score] will be 3-2.

Pacheco fought Harrison twice in 2019, losing both matches by decision. This was Harrison’s first time going the distance as a professional MMA fighter; she won her first PFL lightweight belt that year. They both went 3-0 in the 2022 season, qualifying for another championship.

“I believe we will meet again because there are no other girls in her weight class,” Pacheco said. “We know the [other ones] are not at our level. Putting me at #2 here, because I don’t have the same eyeballs or hype as her, we’re on the same level.

“After beating her now, I think she’ll have to change her strategy to be a good opponent because her game is exposed. I wasn’t the first to slow her down. [Marina Mokhnatkina] did that too. It has to innovate at some point. If that already happens when she fights girls who are not on her level, imagine when he fights someone like Amanda [Nunes] and [Cris] Cyborg. It would be much more difficult for her.

Pacheco was making her lightweight debut when she first fought Harrison in May 2019, a year after a failed run on The Ultimate Fighter 28 at featherweight. Seven months later, they saw each other again after the Brazilian tapped Bobbi Jo Dalziel and beat Sarah Kaufman by decision, but Pacheco went home with another loss. Since then, she has won five first-round knockouts and she feels much better.

“I’m much more mature now as an athlete and a professional,” Pacheco said. “I was able to show another side of my game. Everyone saw me as a grappler, and now people fear my hand. It’s going to be completely different for me this time around. She was superior at that time, she was on a roll winning a lot of fights against girls who weren’t at our level, and even though she’s still the favorite in this fight, I pretty clearly see myself winning.

Pacheco thinks she’s evolved as an MMA fighter over the past few years, but she doesn’t think that’s the case for the American Top Team star.

“I don’t see anything – I don’t see any change,” Pacheco said. “She’s great at what she does, but she has one plan and she sticks to it. His fights are very similar. If you look at her career, she does the same thing she did to me in 2019. She doesn’t knock people on their feet, she usually stops them on the ground. She doesn’t have knockout power like me. His fights are just that, basically. I don’t see any development. She does not fight MMA.

“My fights are way more exciting,” she continued. “I fought pretty much the same girls she fought and we finished them in different ways. People will say that she does not change her game but continues to win. So what? We have thousands of top fighters right now who aren’t delivering. We don’t want that. As a fan, I want to see action, I want to see a fight, I want to feel emotions.

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