The UFC returns from a week off with another card from the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada, headlined by Alexa Grasso, -244, taking on Viviane Araujo, +185. This card also features plenty of fighters who will go for the finish at all costs.
All Odds Provided by Stake.com Accurate as of 7:30 PM EST 10/13/2022
This week's main event features a matchup between two women looking to establish their position as true contenders in the Flyweight division. Alexa Grasso has grown a lot since her UFC debut, and she has developed a well-rounded game. Viviane Araujo has fought very high-level competition since entering the UFC and has had mixed results thus far.
I'll lean with Grasso here, but this is a very close fight which isn't reflected in these odds.
Pick: Grasso O/U: Over 4.5 -233
Cub Swanson makes the drop to Bantamweight here in a great matchup. Jonathan Martinez has a great kicking game which he showed off in his last fight using the leg kick to significant effect. Cub Swanson has been on a nice run lately; aside from an early loss to Giga Chikadze, he has had some great showings in the later stages of his career, using his crisp striking to piece up anyone who isn't ready.
I'm taking Martinez here as although Cub has looked good, he is at the end of his career, moving down in weight and taking on a tough young guy who could use his kicks to make this a long night for Cub.
Pick: Martinez O/U: Over 2.5 -156
Here we get a firefight between two men who don't get paid to go the distance. Dusko Todorovic is a very talented finisher, although I have questions about his durability as it has been holding him back. Jordan Wright is an all-action wildman, which has sometimes gotten him into trouble, but he can produce highlight finishes.
I'll take Todorovic in this one as I think he is the more skilled fighter with more ways to win, but I am not eager to back either fighter with my cash.
Pick: Todorovic O/U: Under 1.5 -222
This is a clash of styles at Light Heavyweight as two finishers collide. Misha Cirkunov is a grappler who should be looking to get this fight to the ground from the go and use his dangerous submission game. Alonzo Menifield has shown solid finishing ability in his UFC run, although when a fight goes long and he can't land a big shot, it can get ugly.
This line is off, as although Menifield has a much better record, this is a bad matchup for him. I will take Cirkunov to win by submission as I think that is his best path to victory, and Menifield could give him opportunities.
Pick: Cirkunov O/U: Under 1.5 -127
A fun matchup here at Bantamweight to close the prelims. Mana Martinez had gone to decision in each of his two UFC bouts; however, before that, all his wins were by knockout, showing the power in his hands. Brandon Davis is back for another run with the UFC, which started with the first knockout loss of his career.
I'll lean with the Martinez side as I see a lot more upside with his knockout power; however, this is a tough fight to call.
Pick: Martinez O/U: Under 2.5 +100
Here we see Victor Henry return for the first time since his upset win over Raoni Barcelos last year. Raphael Assuncao has fought many of the top names at Bantamweight and has a win over the current champ, although he is long past his prime now and has lost his last four, with three being finishes. Victor Henry shocked many people with his high pace, which he used to overwhelm Raoni Barcelos at UFC 270.
I've got Henry in this one, as he put on a fantastic performance against a formidable opponent last time out, and it is hard to back Assuncao at this point in his career.
Pick: Henry O/U: Under 2.5 +116
This should be a good wrestling match at Middleweight. Nick Maximov is a tough grappler who went into his last fight a big favorite, before being upset by a quick submission. Jacob Malkoun is a strong wrestler, although he relies on it heavily as he has shown little striking or submission ability.
I'll take Maximov in this fight as unless Malkoun can control him for the entire fight, I don't see a path to victory for him, and Maximov will not be easy to control as he is a great grappler who has fought good wrestlers before.
Pick: Maximov O/U: Over 2.5 -278
Here we get a good matchup at Featherweight. Many underrated Joanderson Brito after his loss to Bill Algeo but his last time out, he finished Andre Fili in under a minute showing how dangerous a fighter he is. Lucas Alexander makes his UFC debut here off five straight wins, with his last three being finishes.
I've got Brito in this one as he is much more proven.
Pick: Brito O/U: Under 1.5 -133
This is a well-matched fight at Strawweight. Piera Rodriguez is undefeated and has shown she is comfortable striking and grappling. Sam Hughes has had her struggles in the UFC, but of late, she has used her grappling to string together some wins.
This is a close fight as I give the striking edge to Rodriguez but the grappling to Hughes. I'll take Rodriguez to win as I think she is more well-rounded, although I'm not betting on this one.
Pick: Rodriguez O/U: Over 2.5 -312
This is a can't-miss matchup at Flyweight early on the card. C.J Vergara is a tough fighter who has had upset wins over prospects and will look to get another. Tatsuro Taira is an outstanding young fighter with a great submission game.
I will lean toward Taira in this one, although I have a tough time betting on such an unproven fighter at this number against a guy like Vergara.
Pick: Taira O/U: Over 2.5 -213
Here we get an exciting matchup at Welterweight between two fighters looking to get some momentum. Mike Jackson is back again despite several terrible performances, and I am not sure that he belongs fighting in the UFC. Pete Rodriguez is a quick finisher who has not yet gotten out of the first round in his martial arts career.
I'm not betting on this fight, as neither guy has shown me anything that gives me enough confidence to put my money on them.
Pick: Rodriguez O/U: Under 1.5 -238
Jonathan Martinez -222
Misha Cirkunov by Submission
Victor Henry Inside the Distance