The Severe Spotlight: Lupita Godinez

Lupita Godinez has been a fighter on the cusp of a breakout performance since her induction into the UFC’s 115lb division. A deep wrestling pedigree, combined with an improving striking arsenal; fans and analysts alike have been waiting for the pieces of the puzzle to meld together via the soldering iron that is octagon time.

She came into this performance riding a two-fight win streak, a two-fight win streak where she had left her wrestling credentials behind to solely showcase her standup skill progression.

The usual low stance, head tucked and slightly angled off to the right Godinez stalked out into the cage and began immediately pressuring Reed. Reed a confident grappler in her own right initiated a clinch that Godinez turned to a back bodylock instantly. After some adjustment from Reed to get her back flat to the cage, allowed Godinez to find a hip and hit a cultured and very pretty reverse broomstick takedown, landing with a single hook, the acumen of Godinez shines again in this very early exchange as Reed begins to roll through from the turtle. If Godinez had stayed in her regular position, she might have lost the scramble, but she laces in a grapevine hook to slow the roll of Reed and land her in bottom half guard.  

The snappy jab gets to work as they both rise back to the feet – Godinez pressuring, and Reed looking to circle off to her left. Godinez sets up a wonderful left hook that wobbles and drops Reed. She does rise for long before Godinez connects her back to the mat with amplitude. Zero time wasted she finds both hooks and begins working on a rear naked choke. Reed has done a good job of turning her chin into the position and fights the choke arm with her free hand, but Godinez is insistent.

Reed now works on misaligning her spine from the back of Godinez, as the compulsory route to escape. Godinez reads this expertly and switches to a near side kimura grip, before building height on the back with a hip post and lacing her right leg over the top, switching off for an armbar. The armbar is very tight, at one point the angle of Reed’s arm was gruesome but because of the locking of the feet, Godinez had not been able to stop Reed building height. To finish the armbar you hamstring curl the legs, which both secures the opponents shoulder into the lock, but also removes movement in the head, which in turn stops height from being built.

Reed does build height. Initially into a triangle setup before Godinez switches off to a more regular armbar position from bottom guard. Reed misaligns her elbow with some slams, but that was as close to an armbar finish as you would want to see.  

Round two see’s Reed burst out of the gate and begin her campaign to demand some respect on the feet. She forces Godinez to take a plum clinch to stave off some of the pressure. But Elise Reed makes the cardinal sin in modern MMA and elects for a head and arm throw. Godinez rises with her underhook, and lumps Reed into the corner between the canvas and the cage wall.

Wonderful timing on the low calf kick as Reed begin to rise allowed for a large off balance, setting up both the resultant left hook and the takedown. Loopy uses a hip grip and a knee cut to pass into chest to chest half guard, walking the hips of Reed square to pin the shoulders to the mat.

Once again Elise Reed rose, a left, right and a second left hook sent Reed on the beginnings of a tumble. A barrage of shots sent her deep into the world of chaos before Godinez hits a high amplitude dump once again, landing in side control.

Not often is it a good idea to take a rocked fighter down, but when you have the skill set and the propensity for submission attempts as Godinez does in this fight, it’s understandable why she did. A barrage of knees met Reed as she drops for the final time into full mount. A desperate attempt to stop the ground and pound forced her to give her back as Godinez threatens the choke with her right arm, only to force Reed to peel with her left, and allow space on the left side to slide a full choke underneath and the chin. Belly down, and nowhere to roll, Reed submits.

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