The UFC welcomes November with a Fight Night production held at the APEX in Las Vegas. As opposed to last week’s event featuring many larger fighters, this week’s card has only two fights at 170 pounds or above.
Odds are from DraftKings (unless noted) as of Wednesday night. Go to VSiN.com for UFC Betting Splits.
Last week, my release of Arlovski/de Lima Over 2.5 (-135) lost as Arlovski was submitted in the first round. Big miss.
2022 profitability: 24-15 (+10.07 units)
Marina Rodriguez (-215) vs. Amanda Lemos (+185)
Women’s Strawweight (115 pounds) | Main event
Cage size means little when the combatants are 115 pounds. There will be plenty of room to maneuver in this fight pitting precision punching against profuse power.
Anytime Marina Rodriguez comes to compete, the game plan is based on space, movement and strike evasion. At 5-foot-6, the third-ranked Rodriguez almost always has height and reach advantages.
Rodriguez, a Brazilian, uses her footwork to maintain her distance and precision striking to accrue points. Over time, she’s able to measure opponents trying to gain the inside with straight power strikes.
The other Brazilian in the cage is tigress Amanda Lemos. She arrives with a 12-2-1 record, but what stands out is that 10 of the 12 victories have come via finish. Yes, Lemos is the power side of this duel.
While Lemos is giving up height in this bout, she matches Rodriguez’s 65-inch reach. What we have is an aggressive power-striker in Lemos against a fluid counter-striker in Rodriguez.
Rodriguez will look to confound Lemos with constant movement, strike evasion and volume punching/kicking/elbowing.
Rodriguez opened -150 and is now priced at -200 and higher.
Total in this fight: 4.5 rounds (Under -130)
Pick: Rodriguez -200 (Circa and SuperBook) in Leg 1 of an open parlay
Tagir Ulanbekov (-215) vs. Nate Maness (+185)
Flyweight (125 pounds)
It’s possible that Tagir Ulanbekov gets respect because he trains under sambo/grappling savant Khabib Nurmagomedov, but, in reality, this Dagestan fighter really prefers to stand and strike.
While he possesses a stout grappling/sambo arsenal, he seems to have a higher opinion of his effective striking than is actually warranted. His two UFC wins have come over modest competition and in his last bout, a loss to the herky-jerky Tim Elliott, his energy waned late.
Maness enters on the “drop” as he is set to return to 125 pounds after competing at 135 in recent bouts.
At 135 pounds, Maness seems a touch undersized. At 125, he’ll own several physical advantages over his competitors provided he is able to maintain and apply the same quickness, cardio, power and durability.
I’ve had my eye on Maness as an overachiever for some time. He’s had a couple of weight-cut trials that have gone well enough for him to get this opportunity booked, so I have little hesitation in leaning to him pending weigh-in success.
Total in this fight: 2.5 rounds (Over -215)
Pick: Maness +185 (pending Friday’s weigh-ins)