Bellator Flyweight champion, Juliana Velasquez, left, lines up with Denise Kielholtz, far right, after the weigh-ins ahead of Bellator 262. Photo: Supplied
Bellator Flyweight champion, Juliana Velasquez, left, lines up with Denise Kielholtz, far right, after the weigh-ins ahead of Bellator 262. Photo: Supplied

Will Denise Kielholtz make history at Bellator 262?

By Julian Kiewietz Time of article published Jul 16, 2021

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CAPE TOWN – The Mixed Martial Arts world will find out on Saturday if Denise Kielholtz can spoil the Juliana Velasquez party at Bellator MMA 262.

The Netherland’s Denise (6-2) will challenge the Brazilian Bellator Flyweight champion (11-0) for her title at the Mohegan Sun Arena (Uncasville Connecticut), in a bout that has the purists drooling over due to the stylistic match-up lined up.

Both athletes have strong backgrounds in Judo while Denise also currently holds the Bellator Kickboxing Flyweight title.

Should she get the win tomorrow, she would go down in the history books, becoming the first fighter to hold both the Bellator MMA and Kickboxing championships simultaneously.

This will not be an easy feat as her opponent comes with an impressive resume, too.

Since Juliana’s professional debut back in 2014, she is yet to suffer a loss.

When Juliana was asked if Denise’s elite kickboxing was something she placed extra emphasis on during this camp, she doused any perception that she will be heading into a bout with a one-dimensional athlete.

“I see her as a complete fighter and that is how I prepare to overcome my opponents,” says Juliana.

“She’s not just a Kickboxing champion, she is also a Judo black belt, just like me.

“I have prepared for every kind of scenario. People may think that she’s coming to strike, but she could very well try the ground game with me. People look at me like a Judo martial artist and I go in there and I strike people.

“This is MMA, there are several martial arts that we could use, so anything can happen in this fight and I prepare for all scenarios.

Denise was confident that this fight will be a great challenge to Juliana.

“I see a lot of things (openings in her game plan), but I am not going to elaborate too much on our fight game. Of course, the biggest thing you are going to see this Friday (tomorrow SAST) is that she has never faced a fighter like me before. I faced a lot of fighters like her. We'll see if she can step to Plan B if Plan A does not work.

“My team Schreiber and I have worked our game plan to such a degree that, if it works, then I think even if I stand with Juliana, or anyone in this division for that matter, nobody is going to be able to stand with me longer than the first round.”

The event – which is closed to the public – will air live on Showtime tomorrow morning at 3am. The prelim card will stream live at 12 tonight (SAST) on the Bellator MMA YouTube channel, Showtime Sports YouTube channel and Pluto TV.

The full card:

BELLATOR MMA 262: Velasquez vs. Kielholtz Main Card:

Flyweight World Title Main Event: C-Juliana Velasquez (125) vs. #3-Denise Kielholtz (124)

Heavyweight Bout: #5-Tyrell Fortune (233.5) vs. #7-Matt Mitrione (261)

Bantamweight Bout: Matheus Mattos (135.75) vs. Cee Jay Hamilton (135.5)

Featherweight Bout: #2-Arlene Blencowe (146) vs. Dayana Silva (146)

Middleweight Bout: #5-Johnny Eblen (186) vs. Travis Davis (186)

Preliminary Card:

Heavyweight Bout: Ronny Markes (252) vs. Said Sowma (245)

Featherweight Bout: Cody Law (145.75) vs. Theodore Macuka (146)

Flyweight Bout: Diana Avsaragova (126) vs. Gabriella Gulfin (124.75)

Featherweight Bout: Johnny Soto (145.75) vs. Adil Benjilany (145.75)

Lightweight Bout: Charlie Campbell (155) vs. Nicholas Giulietti (156)

@juliankiewietz

IOL Sport

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