The UFC heads to the Amway Center in sunny Orlando, Florida, United States, for an action-packed fight night headlined by two can't-miss strikers at Welterweight as the Wonderboy Stephen Thompson +132 takes on Kevin Holland -169. This card also features a Heavyweight clash you won't want to miss, with Tai Tuivasa +170 taking on Sergei Pavlovich -220.
All Odds Provided by Stake.com Accurate as of 1:30 PM EST 12/01/2022
This top-tier main event should be nothing if not a crowd-pleaser. Stephen Thompson is known as one of the best MMA strikers of all time; although he has been out-grappled of late, he has won over some of the division's best boxers, Geoff Neal and Vicente Luque. Kevin Holland is coming off a brutal loss to Khamzat Chimaev, but it's tough to hold that against him because of the circumstance.
This is very close, and I considered betting on Thompson all week, but at his age, I have a hard time trusting his durability and defense against a striker with the length and skill of Holland. If you can find a line, I recommend betting Holland Decision No bet Line as this offers a solid price on Holland to finish the fight with no risk if Thompson outpoints him.
Pick: Holland O/U: Under 4.5 -179
A matchup that was made to be fun, as that is what both of these men have asked for at this stage in their careers. Rafael Dos Anjos proved in his last showing he can compete with high-level contenders even in the loss to Rafael Fiziev, and a move back up to Welterweight may give him a bit more juice for some fun fights on his way out. Bryan Barberena knows what he is, and that is a brawler, and he is a good one, although his skill set is nothing world-class.
I'll pick Dos Anjos here as he deserves to be the favorite, but this price is a lot for a fighter of his age coming off a knockout who is moving up in weight.
Pick: Dos Anjos O/U: Under 2.5 +149
Flyweight is alive and well and gets an excellent showcase near the top of the card. Matheus Nicolau is a very well-rounded, solid fighter who finds and attacks his path to victory well. Matt Schell is coming off a wild comeback over Sumudaerji, where he showed his toughness and reliance on the ground game.
I like Nicolau in this one, and if this stays standing as I expect it to, he can find the knockout.
Pick: Nicolau O/U: Under 2.5 -108
No great card is complete without a Heavyweight banger like this one. Tai Tuivasa is as fun as it gets with his fast hands and crazy power. Sergei Pavlovich is a fighter who is looking to make a conclusive statement after a controversial stoppage over Derrick Lewis.
I was very tempted to back Tuivasa at this price as he has cashed in these spots a lot in his career, but I am going to pass as Pavlovich is on another level to his past wins, and he is coming off a recent knockout loss in a brutal fight.
Pick: Pavlovich O/U: Under 1.5 -204
This fight comes on short notice as Jack Hermansson has yet another late opponent change. Jack Hermansson is a tricky fighter with a well-rounded skill set. Roman Dolidze comes in off his destruction of Phil Hawes to continue his win streak and make a real name for himself in this division.
I am going to lean toward Hermansson for my pick, but my bet for this fight will be on it to go the distance as Jack Hermansson has gone to a decision in each of his last four, and although Dolidze has recent finishes, I question the oppositions durability and he had three decisions before that,
Pick: Hermansson O/U: Over 2.5 -147
An interesting matchup here at Middleweight with both men looking to gain traction in the division. Eryk Anders has shown a solid wrestling and clinch game, but his striking is lacking aside from some power. Kyle Daukaus has often impressed me with his submission game, but his striking could be better.
I'll take Daukaus here; although this matchup could lead to a close fight, I will bet to go over 2.5 as these two have both shown solid durability over their careers.
Pick: Daukaus O/U: Over 2.5 -179
Explosive Welterweight battle here that is sure to produce fireworks. Niko Price returns and is known for his wild style that always leads to crazy fights. Phillip Rowe is a solid striker who is good and uses his length to control range.
I was shocked this line moved towards Price as I bet Rowe early, and I am still confident as Price is not a fighter that I would look to back with my money.
Pick: Rowe O/U: Under 2.5 -182
Great matchup of veteran Strawweights here. Angela Hill is an outstanding volume striker who has shown a better grappling game in recent fights. Emily Ducote is coming off her UFC debut, but she has had plenty of experience and is entering her best form.
This is a tough fight to pick but I'll lean Ducote because of her grappling advantage.
Pick: Ducote O/U: Over 2.5 -400
Second of two Lightweight fights back to back here. Clay Guida is a veteran known for his pace and wrestling, although his age is a concern. Scott Holtzman is coming off fights with Mateusz Gamort and Beniel Dariush, and although he lost, it shows the UFC is willing to put him against high-level competition after all his fights with the promotion.
I'll go with Guida in this one as if he can implement his wrestling top game, and I believe he can dominate rounds of this fight.
Pick: Guida O/U: Over 2.5 -213
Fantastic matchup at Lightweight here on the prelims. Michael Johnson has looked excellent in his last few fights showing his speed and power are still dangerous. Marc Diakiese began his career as a flashy kickboxer, but he has since developed a strong wrestling game and mixed it well to show he is a new fighter ready to do what it takes to win.
I like Diakiese here as he is durable and has the skill to fight Johnson on the feet, but when he mixes in his grappling, he can take over this matchup. My bet here is the over 2.5 as Diakiese likes to win rounds with control, and he has never been knocked out, but Johnson has the skill to keep any fight close.
Pick: Diakiese O/U: Over 2.5 -227
Featherweight grappler clash in this matchup. Darren Elkins is known for damage more than any grappler I can think of, whether he is giving it or taking it. Johnathan Pearce is a long grappler who is very good at wearing opponents down and getting the finish.
I've got Pearce here, but it is difficult to see how these two styles will clash, and this price is very steep for so many questions.
Pick: Pearce O/U: Under 2.5 -141
Two women who are looking to break into contention at Flyweight here. Tracy Cortez has won so far using her strong wrestling, although her striking is concerning. Amanda Ribas has a great submission game and has improved her stand-up game in her recent fights.
I'll bet Ribas here, as she has a much more well-rounded game coupled with her high-level experience across two divisions.
Pick: Ribas O/U: Under 2.5 +235
A very intriguing matchup here at Lightweight. Natan Levy is a good grappler who likes to take the back and control from there. Genaro Valdez is a high pace finisher who was stopped in his first UFC fight by knockout.
I bet on Levy earlier in the week at DougLasVegasBets.net when he was at slightly lower odds, but I still think he is the clear side in this matchup.
Pick: Levy O/U: Under 2.5 -238
Here we get two Featherweights with very different paths to this fight. Francis Marshall is undefeated, coming off an impressive win on Dana White's Contender Series where he showed he could mix wrestling with boxing and do real damage. Marcelo Rojo came into the UFC and fought Charles Jourdain and Kyler Phillips and has shown he is a tough competitor.
I've got a bet on Rojo here as the underdog, as Marshall is very unproven, with most of his opponents having losing records, and Rojo has had good showings even in losses.
Pick: Rojo O/U: Over 1.5 -189
A sleeper matchup to start the night off here at Strawweight. Yazmin Jauregui had a very impressive debut showing her aggressive striking. Istela Nunes has had a rough start to her UFC career, losing to two rather unimpressive opponents.
I've got Jauregui here, as I think she is levels above Nunes right now.
Pick: Jauregui O/U: Under 2.5 +165
Phil Rowe +106
Natan Levy -213
Amanda Ribas -119
Marcelo Rojo +134
Kevin Holland Inside The Distance (Scorecards = No Action)
Nicolau by TKO/KO +235
Jack Hermansson Roman Dolidze Fight Goes The Distance -147
Eryk Anders Kyle Daukaus Over 2.5 -179
Michael Johnson Marc Diakiese Over 2.5 -227