Betting Guide for UFC Vegas 53
Well-rounded bantamweight finishers will cap the final chapter of UFC's three-part series in Las Vegas before the pay-per-view next week.
UFC Vegas 53: Font vs. Vera takes place Saturday from the UFC Apex facility in Las Vegas, Nevada. Where are the sharpest places to wager on the card using UFC odds?
Andre Fili and Gina Mazany to Both Win (+115; 2.0 Units)
A comfy decision win and a first-round submission moved the two-legger to 7-3 in 2022. Let's keep it rolling.
Andre Fili (-265) is the second-largest favorite on this weekend's card, and it's because it is truly shocking he's found poor enough results to meet Joanderson Brito here. Brito has just one UFC appearance -- a decided loss to Bill Algeo.
Fili's not only better than Algeo, but he's a near-ranked caliber featherweight, dropping only fights to Bryce Mitchell and Sodiq Yusuff since 2019. Brito failed to defend either takedown attempt by Algeo in his UFC, and Fili lands 2.50 takedowns per 15 minutes on sharp 50% accuracy. "Touchy" will always have his wrestling to fall back in this one.
The second wrestler in the lay is Gina Mazany (-178). Truly, Mazany's wrestling is dominant amongst her flyweight peers. She lands 4.70 takedowns per 15 minutes on an even sharper 58% accuracy than Fili.
Her one issue has been durability. She was sparked in seconds by Julia Avila, and in a fight she was dominating, she got clipped by Priscilla Cachoeira. Her opponent, Shanna Young, has just 4 finishes in 11 pro fights against lesser competition. "The Shanimal" also has a wretched 53% takedown defense that's caused her to drop her first three UFC appearances.
With weaker, less proven foes on the menu, it would be a horribly disappointing result for either to drop these bouts.
Jake Collier to Win (+122; 1.0 Unit)
Andrei Arlovski is on a 5-1 run in UFC with a -30 striking differential and zero wins by finish.
He can't keep getting away with it!
Arlovski has another capable heavyweight in front of him this weekend that may turn the tide. That's Jake Collier (+122), whose return to UFC against Tom Aspinall turned out to be an unfair measuring stick. Aspinall might be the best heavyweight in the world.
Collier is 2-1 since, and his 8.41 significant strikes per minute in those three bouts in jaw-dropping for any fighter -- but especially one his size. With a +2.74 striking success rate in this sample, he's dusted an opponent list that includes Carlos Felipe.
Felipe had a -10 striking differential against Arlovski, and that same mark was -36 against Collier. With a massive pace advantage, Collier is at least in the correct level of competition to take a flier that Arlovski's bottom-line results regress back towards his peripherals.
Dart Throw of the Week: Darren Elkins by Submission (+700; 0.25 Units)
Tristan Connelly's late-notice win over Michel Pereira -- at a weight 25 pounds heavier than he'll compete Saturday -- has thrown oddsmakers through a loop here.
Connelly was easily squashed by Pat Sabatini in his featherweight debut, but we really don't have a great idea of what he does well -- if anything -- at a UFC level. He averages just 2.77 significant strikes landed per minute, and while his nine submission wins regionally would state otherwise, he's been an atrocious grappler.
Offensively, Connelly has just a 14% takedown accuracy. Defensively, while his 70% takedown defense seems strong, he was controlled for nearly 10 minutes by Sabatini.
Darren Elkins (-172) can wrestle. He averages 2.65 takedowns per 15 minutes, and he's a cardio warrior who's been finished in just 5 of his 36 pro fights.
Sabatini's finishing rate is just 25%, but Elkins has secured a 54% rate in a larger sample. In this fight that could be contested for large parts on the mat, I'll take the favorite to break his foe and lock up a choke at seven-to-one odds.