UFC Daily Fantasy Helper: Fight Night 10/3/20
Combat sports are one of America's longest-standing active sports to wager on. This was evident throughout the late-1900s as boxing took the sports world by storm. From Muhammed Ali to Mike Tyson, several stars were born, and Americans around the country placed bets on who would win boxing matches. Nowadays, with boxing much smaller than it was throughout the 1900s, mixed martial arts have taken the lead as America's favorite combat sport.
By far, the largest and most successful MMA organization in North America is the Ultimate Fighting Championship, commonly known as UFC. The UFC lays claim to the best mixed martial artists in the world and is showcased on both cable and pay-per-view events every month. As one of the first sports to return with compliance of social distancing, UFC daily fantasy is now live on FanDuel.
numberFire is always your best place to prepare for the upcoming UFC card. In addition to this DFS helper, if you would rather bet the fights outright on FanDuel Sportsbook, Barry Cohen has you covered with his betting guide to find where to place sharp money on Saturday’s fights.
With those tools at our disposal, let's break down UFC Fight Night: Holm vs. Aldana, which will take place on Saturday night live from "Fight Island" in Abu Dhabi.
Kyler Phillips ($21): This is a rough card on paper, as only one fighter has a striking success rate above +2.00 strikes, and only one fighter averages more than 5.00 FanDuel points per minute (excluding bonuses). That one fighter in both categories is Kyler Phillips, which makes him an interesting target as he's welcoming in UFC newcomer Cameron Else. At 6.53 significant strikes per minute and an excellent 67% striking defense, Phillips has performed well thus far. He scored 89 significant strikes, 2 takedowns, and a submission attempt in a stellar win over Gabriel Silva in February. He is a -450 favorite to move to 2-0 inside the octagon against Else, and he combines that with solid -170 odds to do so inside the distance.
Dusko Todorovic ($20): Todorovic makes his UFC debut in this fight, but the larger story entering this main card bout is with his opponent, Dequan Townsend. A once highly touted prospect, Townsend is an incredibly ugly 0-3 inside the UFC octagon with only 47 significant strikes in 41 minutes of fight time. Townsend has been physically overwhelmed in all three fights and surprisingly gets a fourth attempt here.
Todorovic enters with incredibly strong volume numbers -- 6.80 significant strikes at a lethal 71% accuracy -- as well a perfect 9-0 record. It would be a monumental upset to see Townsend stay inside the UFC with a win, considering Todorovic is a -335 favorite as well as the fact that Townsend would likely need to at least triple his career-high in significant strikes (28) to win a decision in a fight that is fairly likely to go the distance at +136 odds on FanDuel Sportsbook.
Other High-Salaried Fighters
Irene Aldana ($19): The main event of the evening -- and the only five-round fight on the card -- is between Aldana and Holly Holm in women's bantamweight, and there is volume to be had in a fight with -182 odds to see all 25 minutes. Aldana is likely the one to capitalize on that, as her career rate of 6.16 significant strikes per minute is fourth on this card, whereas opponent Holm sits at just 2.75. Both Aldana and Holm have above a 55% striking defense, as well, which should lead to more volume needed to score points by round.
The power edge sits with Aldana, who is +420 to win by knockout, with Holm at 6-to-1 odds in the same department. It's worth noting that if this fight heads to the judges, the advantage should sit with Aldana. Coming off a knockout of Ketlen Vieira, Aldana is seen as a potential option to challenge dominant champion Amanda Nunes at some point in her career. On the flip side, Holm was already brutally knocked out by Nunes. That may give a slight bump in the win bonus potential to Aldana, who checks several boxes as the option to use in the main event.
Yorgan De Castro ($18): The quality of this card certainly drops off beyond the ranked main event, as the co-main event at heavyweight is between Yorgan De Castro and Carlos Felipe, a duo that is a combined 1-2 in the UFC. However, action should come quickly in this fight that has -280 odds to finish early, and De Castro sits at the sizable -275 favorite to come out victorious. Five of De Castro's six career wins have come by knockout, and his heavy hands will likely have plenty openings against Felipe, whose -1.94 striking success rate is third-worst on this card. De Castro was presumed to be injured against Greg Hardy, as he fired only 69 strikes after an early awkward leg tweak, so it will be interesting to see if the prospect can rebound with an early knockout and set up a rematch down the line. De Castro has fairly short +260 odds to do just that in Round 1.
Konklak Suphisara ($14): If you watch Saturday night for Suphisara, you may be waiting a while, as she goes by her fight name "Loma Lookboonme" inside the promotion. At just 5'1," the former atomweight from Thailand may be the smallest fighter on the UFC roster, and until UFC does unveil a potential 105-pound division, she may struggle to move up the rankings at 115 pounds. However, giving up just two inches of height to Jinh-Yu Frey -- a former 105-pound fighter in her own right -- Lookboonme may not be outmatched in this fight.
Behind that small frame is some serious skill. Her +1.30 striking success rate is fifth on this card, and her mark of 5.07 significant strikes per minute also ranks fifth. Frey fires only 2.09 significant strikes per minute at a -0.40 striking success rate, meaning Lookboonme should have a sizable advantage boxing in this fight. Without the size to overwhelm her, she went the distance with Angela Hill, so there is potential that Lookboonme once again puts on a solid performance against a comparable-sized opponent Saturday, as Frey lacks the skill that the ranked Hill has.
Julianna Pena ($12): Pena is assigned a salary around other fighters with poor metrics as heavy moneyline underdogs, but she is far from that in her fight against Germaine de Randamie. "The Venezuelan Vixen" is the fourth-ranked women's bantamweight in the world and would appear to be next in line to challenge Amanda Nunes if she can get a convincing win on Saturday. She has had a nice career since winning The UItimate Fighter, given that she is 5-1, with her only defeat coming to the dominant flyweight champion Valentina Shevchenko.
Pena is a grappler with a clip of 2.60 takedowns per match, which is second-best on this card. Those grappling skills have given de Randamie issues in the past, although many in MMA circles noted her improvement as she survived all five rounds with Nunes on the mat. de Randamie is the stronger striker, but in a card barren for underdogs, Pena has a path to score points through takedowns -- which could also lead to top control to win the fight as just a slight +120 underdog. Pena is an affordable option given her potential to win. She needs to win on Saturday to stay in front of Irene Aldana for the next shot at UFC gold in the women's 135-pound division.
Austin Swaim is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Austin Swaim also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username ASwaim3. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.