Best bets for UFC Vegas 77
Last week at UFC 290, favorites ran 7-6 pushing their rate of success this year to a ten-year low of 61.1% after finishing last year at a ten-year high of just over 67%.
My release last week of a parlay with Volkanovski ITD and Moreno was unsuccessful as Moreno lost a tight split decision to Alexandre Pantoja.
Profitability this year stands 11-10 +2.15
This week, we march towards the third of five straight events for the UFC in July with this Fight Night event from their APEX Center before traveling overseas to London for next week’s production.
Holly Holm -155 vs. Mayra Bueno Silva +135
Women’s bantamweight (135 pounds) main event
The bantamweight division once owned and operated by former champion Amanda Nunes is currently without a titleholder.
This Holm vs. Bueno Silva fight will go a long way in clarifying the winner of this bout’s claim as being legitimately regarded as a top-three talent in the division.
Bueno Silva is ranked tenth in the division and arrives here after winning three straight fights against just better than nominal talent after she was defeated four fights back by number two-ranked Marian Fiorot in a 125-pound flyweight fight.
Bueno Silva, a purple belt in BJJ, is well more effective and efficient an athlete at 135 pounds because she now possesses the energy to fight ferociously for fifteen minutes, but she’s in against an athlete in Holm that has competed at 145 pounds, so Bueno Silva will have to overcome some Holm size in this tussle.
When on her game, Bueno Silva is an aggressive forward-pressing fighter who will look to engage Holm first, then do the difficult by pressing her backward into the fence, and then transporting her to the floor for a flogging.
In this bout, Bueno Silva will be giving up a couple of inches of height and reach to Holly, though it’s Bueno Silva who will be the younger athlete by a decade.
Holly Holm, ‘the preacher’s daughter,’ is a grizzled veteran of the UFC. Versed as a blue belt in BJJ, she’s also fluent in kickboxing and boxing. Holly is 8-6 in the UFC with a championship title victory over Ronda Rousey in her decorated career.
Once the bell rings for the start of this bout, I’ll look to see how long it takes Buena Silva to penetrate the distance/spacing control of Holm for Holm wants to utilize movement to create the distance she requires to piece up the incoming aggressor.
Bueno Silva on the other hand needs to make this fight an elbow to eyebrow brawl. She needs to immediately engage Holm, bully her, and turn this into a grimy, ugly, clasping maul.
Engaged, pressed into the cage, or rolling on the mat is where Bueno Silva must take this bout. By all means she needs to avoid allowing this competition to become a stand-up kickboxing match for she’s poorly equipped to compete with the more experienced, cagey, refined kickboxer Holly Holm there. This is a substantial step up for Bueno Silva but one I believe she may be ready for.
While Holly Holm must be regarded as an elite threat in the division and a rightful favorite in this fight, she is now forty-one and just as unable to deal with Bueno Silva’s grappling should this fight hit the floor as Bueno Silva is competing at range against Holm. Which athlete will force their fight upon the other?
Holm opened -175. She is now -165
Total in this bout: 4.5 over -195
Despite this being in the smaller 25-foot cage at the APEX, these 135-pounders will have plenty of room to maneuver, so cage size does not apply to this bout as much as it does for the larger-bodied athletes.
Nazim Sadykhov -150 vs. Terrance McKinney +125
Lightweight (155 pounds)
Sadykhov arrives from the white-hot Longo and Weidman MMA camp in New York, so we know this kid has a solid work ethic, can wrestle/grapple, is fit to fight for ten rounds, and he is as tough as the rest of those assassins in that gym.
In McKinney, we get a fighter who will have more UFC experience in this spot. He’ll be the younger man who utilizes a switch stance and has a four-inch reach advantage.
Sadykhov will look to clasp and fight McKinney up tight and in close. McKinney must use his experience, his athleticism and he must also use form fight IQ because if McKinney is not prepared to fight for a full fifteen against this frantic beast, he’ll be submitted.
If McKinney can effectively pace himself and keep the less savvy fighter on the outside of his strikes, he could get the young man from Azerbaijan frustrated, and then this fight swings to McKinney’s favor as the minutes wear on.
However, Sadykhov’s single point of focus will be to force McKinney backward and keep him defending takedowns as this will force McKinney into expending energy early so Sadykhov can take manage control of this fight late.
McKinney’s wrestling chops seem to be getting overlooked in this matchup a bit. McKinney’s wrestling is on par with Sadykhov’s. I believe McKinney’s cage experience and the fact he’s bouncing off a poor performance in his last fight have him matched favorably in this bout.
McKinney opened -145 in this bout, and now he’s +115. I believe the market has this one incorrect.
Pick: McKinney +125 (This is a buy now)
Total in this fight: 1.5 Rds. Under -185
McKinney ITD numbers will be released later this week, and I do have some interest there.
GambLou ‘Bout Business Podcast drops Friday midday. Get it anywhere you get your podcasts.
Thanks for reading and enjoy the fights.