Justin’s Pick: Claudio Silva
This is a wild card, and there’s virtually nothing that is a guarantee. This is a very specific matchup. Danny Roberts is a boxer, while Claudio Silva is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioner. Silva possesses a black belt under Ricardo Vieira, and owns seven submission victories throughout his career. He returned from an extended layoff in his last fight, submitting Nordine Taleb in the first round in an extremely impressive fashion. Roberts has also found quite a bit of success in the UFC, but he has always struggled with his takedown defense. He brings a 57% takedown defense rate into this fight, and Silva may only need to find one takedown before finding a submission. His win via submission prop is set at -105, and that’s the most likely scenario in this fight. Keep in mind, Silva comes with extended upside because he will have to grapple to find success.
Jason’s Reaction: At his price tag, Silva is one of my favorite options this Saturday. Actually, he might even be a better recommendation on a per dollar basis than Nathaniel Wood.
Jason’s Pick: Nathaniel Wood
There is far too much value this week to avoid fighters like Nathaniel Wood. Wood has multiple ways to finish this fight. Obviously, he could knockout Jose Quinonez, as the odds are currently +185 in favor of such an event. He also has +415 odds to win via submission. While Quinonez does have a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu background, he is not great at fighting off of his back, and he relies much more heavily on his wrestling. If he gets dropped by Wood, he will not be able to rely on his wrestling to stop Wood from passing position. Worst case scenario for Wood, it seems, is a semi-low scoring decision victory. Of course a random knockout or guillotine could happen, but it is wildly unlikely that Wood gets dropped by Quinonez or attempts an overstretched takedown. Wood can be rostered in all formats, but he is a much better option in tournaments, as the lower priced options that are needed to afford him are a little bit risky.
Justin’s Reaction: I agree that there is a ton of value on this card, which puts Wood in play. I likely won’t be going this high in cash, but he’s a strong tournament option.
Justin’s Pick: Dan Ige
Dan Ige is a well-rounded fighter, who is finally reaching his potential in the UFC. He’s a brown belt in judo and a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Ige has also displayed solid striking through his short UFC career. He lost a decision to an impressive Julio Arce before defeating Mike Santiago and Jordan Griffin. He now gets a matchup against Danny Henry, who has enjoyed a surprising UFC run. He owns wins over Daniel Teymur and Hakeem Dawodu with the latter being a first-round submission. Henry’s Cinderella could come to an end this week, though. Keep in mind, he was an underdog in each of his fights that he won for a reason. Ige is the more well-rounded fighter, and has the better finishing odds. He’s proven that he can go the distance, and it’s a bit odd these odds are this close. Ige should win a fairly obvious decision, although he could find a finish.
Jason’s Reaction: I likely will not target Ige all that heavily based on his low potential to finish inside distance. There are similarly priced fighters that have a little bit better upside. I do like Ige in cash games, though.
Jason’s Pick: Gunnar Nelson
Gunnar Nelson has a very clear path to victory, and that path to victory involves the fight ending before the third round comes to an end, increasing his overall upside on DraftKings. Leon Edwards also has a very clear path to victory, which is why Nelson is priced as an underdog. If Edwards keeps this fight standing, he will either knockout Nelson or win via the judge’s scorecard. If Nelson can get this fight to the ground, however, he will utilize his second-degree black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Renzo Gracie to submit Edwards. Edwards has not lost in six fights, but he has yet to face anyone with the BJJ of Nelson. According to Vegas, Nelson has +185 odds to win inside the distance. Edwards, on the other hand, has +450 odds to do the same. Nelson is cheaper, and he makes for a great tournament option due to his elite upside based on how this fight should play out.
Justin’s Reaction: If I’m attacking this fight, I’m using Nelson. It’s that simple. No issues with this recommendation.
Justin’s Pick: Saparbeg Safarov
I haven’t been overly impressed with Saparbeg Safarov in the UFC, but he’s a tough out for anyone. He possessed an 8-0 record coming into the UFC, recording eight finishes. He has since lost to Gian Villante and Tyson Pedro. He was hurt in the Villante fight, while losing to Pedro isn’t truly a knock on his record. Safarov is seen as a Master of Sports in Freestyle Wrestling and Combat Sambo. The most important factor is his opponent. He gets a matchup against Nicolae Negumereanu, who is 9-0 with nine finishes. With that being said, his record is somewhat tainted, as only three of his opponents have winning record, and none are overly impressive. It seems as if he was gifted fights to pad his record, and now he’s being treated as a superstar. This fight is going to finish, and Safarov has a very real chance at finding a finish. For his price tag, there may not be a better tournament option, although he does come with quite a bit of risk.
Jason’s Reaction: I’m far too on Volkan Oezdemir to actually roster Safarov this Saturday, but I like the analysis behind this recommendation. If Oezdemir is not your cup of tea, feel free to consider Safarov.
Jason’s Pick: Volkan Oezdemir
The odds are far too wide in this fight, as Volkan Oezdemir is currently a +210 underdog against Dominick Reyes. Reyes is coming off a win over Ovince Saint Preux, his tenth consecutive in his professional career. Oezdemir, on the other hand, has lost two fights in a row. Those losses are to Daniel Cormier and Anthony Smith. Smith barely found a finish in the third round of an Oezdemir-dominated fight, and Cormier is one of the best in the world inside the octagon. Bettors are displaying classical recency bias, and due to that bias, Oezdemir is far too cheap on DraftKings. If Oezdemir is rostered, fantasy owners can roster five favorites. There is a very real possibility that Oezdemir wins this fight, and he is one of the better options in tournaments this Saturday.
Justin’s Reaction: I think the odds are too wide, as well, which makes Oezdemir a value play. I don’t feel as confidently in him winning this fight, as I lean towards Reyes, but I have no issues with Oezdemir in tournaments.
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