The male and female Flyweight champions put their belt on the line for UFC 255 this weekend. Out of Las Vegas, Nevada the UFC Apex Centre plays host to a pay-per view event for the first time in a long time. With two title fights, a Flyweight contender fight and the return of Mike Perry as well as plenty of new exciting prospects, UFC 255 is sure to provide us with plenty of action.
From a betting standpoint there is little value to be had in the winner of the two title fights so I have had to find some value prop bets and after the recent judging I am inclined to steer clear of fights that may go the distance. Therefore, I have focused on a couple of picks on the early prelims to win by stoppage. The preview for UFC 255 is below.
I have always respected Figueiredo but I must admit I have underestimated him in the past. He has always had slick grappling but the way he knocked out Benavidez in their first fight showcased that he is no mug on the feet. In his last outing he dominated Benavidez in their rematch putting him to sleep in the first and proved he was without any doubt the superior fighter. His opponent Alex Perez cemented his title shot by finishing Jussier Formiga in the first round and has shown a well-rounded game himself. Problem being I don’t see an area in where he can take this fight and come off better than Figueiredo.
I also can’t forget the demolition job Benavidez did on him at the end of 2018 and although he hasn’t lost since, it isn’t like an inconsistent Espinosa or an ageing Formiga are top contender material. I truly believe the bigger test for Figueiredo will be the winner of the Flyweight fight on this undercard between Brandon Moreno and Brandon Royval. Alex Perez too often gets caught by punches or makes the wrong calls on the ground which bodes terribly against the finishing threat of Figueiredo. Figueiredo makes light work of Perez and finishes him before the championship rounds. Quite likely in the first.
Everything suggests that Shevchenko once again will be too good for the title challenger. Shevchenko has put together a formidable record in her professional MMA career to date. When analysing a fighter, you look for holes in their game, but she truly is as well rounded as it gets. Potentially you could say her wrestling is her weakest point and Maia could have success if she can take her down as she does have very good top pressure but honestly that is probably clutching at straws.
Maia really stole the title shot from Joanne Calderwood when she finished her in the first round in her last outing. While Maia does have some solid jiu jitsu it isn’t an area where Shevchenko is weak by any means and it is hard to see her being able to finish the champion. Shevchenko puts up a pace and aggression that no one except Nunes has been able to combat and although Maia is a quality fighter, she doesn’t have the skills required to test Shevchenko for any decent stretch of this fight. There is no value to be had in picking Shevchenko outright so I am going to suggest that this fight can go the distance. Maia is durable enough on the feet and shouldn’t be finished on the ground so as long as she can stay out of the way of one of Valentina’s devastating head kicks she can last all five rounds….just.
Can not believe there is $6 on offer for Jouban to win by KO. Jouban has been around for quite some time and has fought higher quality opponents than Jared Gooden. Of his seven wins in the Octagon, four have come by the way of KO and he has the power to put Gooden away in the early rounds. Gooden makes his UFC debut here after many years in various organisations. He loves a slug fest and if it turns into that Jouban will be the one that comes off better. Jouban clips him with a shot and turns his lights out, probably sometime in the second, in what should be an entertaining fight.
Cosce gets this done quick, simple as that. All bar one of Cosce’s professional wins has come in under 80 seconds and he has amassed a perfect 7-0 record in his career. Palatnikov is Hong Kong’s first UFC representative but Cosce is too explosive for Palatnikov to deal with early. If Palatnikov can last the opening few minutes he can come out victorious. I just can not see how he does. Over $3 for a round 1 KO is also a ridiculously good price so I will snap that up quick smart as I don’t see it being anywhere near that juicy by the time these fighters make the walk to the Octagon.
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