Is Dakota Ditcheva really as good as PFL is making her out to be?

The PFL is putting a lot of marketing into Dakota Ditcheva ... is it warranted or is she all hype?
Dakota Ditcheva
Dakota Ditcheva / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

Dakota Ditcheva is the PFL's newest star. The beautiful blonde-haired, blue-eyed flyweight is all anyone can seem to talk about when it comes to what's happening in PFL.

Ditcheva's mother is a multiple-time world kickboxing champion and it's easy to see that she's following in her mother's footsteps. She's earned combat sports accolades even before coming to MMA. She was part of the British team at the 2016 International Federation of Muay Thai Amateur World Championships where she won gold. She is a three-time world champion in the junior divisions and Daily Mirror and Sport England Pride of Sports Young Sportsperson of the Year.

And last year she won the 2023 PFL Europe flyweight tournament. She made her MMA debut in April 2021 as a bantamweight, winning via a first-round TKO at Caged Steel 25. She made her flyweight debut in 2022 and her PFL debut in the same year. She's undefeated in every PFL fight, finishing everyone along the way.

But is she really as good as she appears on paper and really as good as the PFL is touting her as being? The answer is ... maybe?

Unfortunately at this stage in her career, she hasn't fought anything above her. She's constantly being fed women who are meant to lose. This is no disrespect to her opponents, it just doesn't seem that PFL has stepped up her competition which leads many to wonder if she's being fast-tracked to a title without a whole lot of challenges.

It's a bit too early to determine if Dakota Ditcheva is all hype or not

For example, her last opponent, Chelsea Hackett hadn't won a fight since 2023. Her previous fight was a first-round submission. The PFL needs to be matching her with women on similar winning streaks or higher level competition such as Liz Carmouche or Taila Santos.

We're going to see a big step up for her in the PFL Playoffs which will really give us a better understanding of her actual skill level. So for now, I'm going to say that she's got all the potential and skill to be exactly what the PFL says she is ... but I need to see more before I believe it.

Ditcheva will fight Jena Bishop, the no. 4 seed in August. If she wins she'll face the winner of Taila Santos vs. Liz Carmouche in the 2024 Fianls later this year.