Bi “Killer Bee” Nguyen may be known for her stand-up skills, but the Vietnamese-American now wants to prove her ground game is just as dangerous.
She’ll attempt to do so against Jenelyn Olsim at ONE: BATTLEGROUND III, which airs this Friday, 27 August, where a win would see her battle Grace “Thai Kitten” Cleveland in an alternate bout for the ONE Women’s Atomweight World Grand Prix at the historic all-female event, ONE: EMPOWER.
“I used to say I was a striker, but as I evolve as an athlete, I realize that I was just assuming the identity of what people wanted me to be because I’m such an exciting striker that people just labeled me as a striker. But my grappling is really good, my MMA’s good, and the cage work is good,” she said.
“So going into this fight, I want to rephrase that I am the MMA fighter in this fight. I think her weakness is that she doesn’t have as much MMA experience as me. She’s such a strong striker that a lot of her fights haven’t gone to the ground at all. She has a really strong right hand.
“She’s also massive for this weight class. She’s coming down from strawweight. She’s big. She has heavy hands and heavy kicks. I’m just faster and have more ways to win.”
Olsim, however, also has submission skills to match. In the Filipina’s debut, she submitted Maira Mazar, herself a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu specialist. Which is a fact that’s not lost on Nguyen.
“She did get a submission win, but it’s really her power and her damage that gets her it,” Nguyen continued. “So yeah, I definitely am wary of her ground [game] getting better. I’m not sleeping on her ground [game]. I just think I’m much better on the ground, and I think her strength is her heavy hands.”
Nguyen may not be able to match the power of Olsim, who last competed at strawweight, so she’s eyeing up other ways to halt her bigger opponent.
“The thing is, there are so many ways to hurt people, and power is just one part of striking. There’s speed. There’s elusiveness,” she said.
“I’ll be faster than her. I’ll strike smarter than her. And if I clip her in the right place, she’ll go down, so it’ll be a fun exchange. It’ll definitely be strength versus speed.”
Aside from those attributes, “Killer Bee” has another thing going for her in this match – she’s been training with Olsim’s old foe, Mazar, in the weeks leading up to this fight. The Vietnamese-American believes it will make all the difference on Friday night.
“Oh, it’s everything. It’s like having the playbook because people can game plan and people can tell you what they’re going to do in these interviews, but their tendencies, how they feel, and how they move is going to stay the same for a while,” Nguyen said.
“It’s hard to change those tendencies. So having Maira tell me what it feels like, how she moves, and what her tendencies are is priceless.”
“Killer Bee” is looking to secure her spot as a Grand Prix alternate at ONE: EMPOWER and earn her second win a row after defeating “The Indian Tigress” last time out.
Catch all the action at ONE: BATTLEGROUND III, which airs on Friday, 27 August, on meWATCH and the ONE Super App at 8:30 p.m. SGT.
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