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Our top UFC picks, predictions, and best bets based on the odds at our top-rated sportsbooks.

In what’s been rumored to be a private Facebook event, Mark Zuckerberg will get a front-row seat to watch grappling ace Mackenzie Dern continue her ascent up the strawweight ladder against Xiaonan Yan. Here are our UFC best bets for the UFC Vegas 61 card.

Dern is one of the best grapplers in the UFC, and the No. 5 strawweight has a variety of submission moves if she’s able to snake her opponent to the mat.

Looking to leapfrog Dern and get into the top five, Yan will likely own the advantage when standing up. But that won’t matter if she’s goaded into extended grappling exchanges with the slick Dern. The winner will likely pencil their name onto the shortlist of upcoming contenders at 115 pounds, while the loser will be out of the top five.

Also on the card is a welterweight bout between Randy Brown and Francisco Trinaldo with a high potential for ultraviolence, and a good old-fashioned heavyweight slugfest between Ilir Latifi and the ageless Aleksei Oleinik.

Here are our best bets for Saturday’s UFC Vegas 61 card (odds via DraftKings Sportsbook and Caesars Sportsbook; Pick confidence is based on a 1-to-5-star scale).

UFC Vegas 61 Card and Odds

(Odds via DraftKings)

  • Mackenzie Dern (-230) vs.Xiaonan Yan (+195)
  • Randy Brown (-320) vs. Francisco Trinaldo (+265)
  • Raoni Barcelos (-230) vs. Trevin Jones (+195)
  • Sodiq Yusuff (-1050) vs. Don Shainis (+700)
  • John Castaneda (-195) vs. Daniel Santos (+165)
  • Mike Davis (-190) vs. Viacheslav Borshchev (+160)
  • Ilir Latifi (-175) vs. Aleksei Oleinik (+150)
  • Joaquim Silva (-195) vs. Jesse Ronson (+125)
  • Krzysztof Jotko (-125) vs. Brendan Allen (+105)
  • Maxim Grishin (-165) vs. Philipe Lins (+140)
  • Julija Stoliarenko (-120) vs. Chelsea Chandler (+100)
  • Guido Cannetti (+235) vs. Randy Costa (-280)

UFC Vegas 61 Best Bets

  • Fight line: Barcelos (-230 via DraftKings) ★★★
  • Upset: Yan (+200 via Caesars) ★★
  • Winning method: Yusuff to win by KO/TKO/DQ (-175 via DraftKings) ★★★
  • Prop bet: Brown to win by decision (+140 via DraftKings) ★★★
  • Parlay: Barcelos (-230) + Brown (-320) + Yusuff to win by KO/TKO/DQ (-175 via DraftKings)

Check out the latest comprehensive and most trusted Sportsbook Reviews by SBR.

Top Picks for UFC Vegas 61

Fight Line: Barcelos (-230)

Quite simply, Barcelos is better in almost every aspect. The Brazilian is a more polished striker who lands strikes with greater accuracy and at a higher rate. He’s also a superior grappler both in the wrestling and jiu-jitsu departments.

Jones does possess decent power, but he won't get an opportunity to unleash it. Look for Barcelos to score a dominant decision victory or a late-round stoppage.

Upset: Yan (+200)

This is a very winnable fight for Yan. We all know Dern is a grappling wizard, but she’s at a real disadvantage every second this fight stays upright.

Yan is the more accurate striker, and she seriously outpaces Dern in striking volume, landing 5.33 significant strikes per minute to Dern’s 3.16. The latter's offensive wrestling is also lacking, and she may need to resort to pulling guard if Dern wants to drag Yan to the mat.

Of course, that doesn’t rule out the uber-dangerous Dern’s ability to snatch a neck or an arm. But Yan is a very live underdog if she can keep this fight off the ground.

Winning Method: Yusuff to win by KO/TKO/DQ (-175

Shainis is a decent prospect with legitimate knockout power, but he could be fed to the wolves here. He's riding a five-fight winning streak, but Shainis debuting against an unranked opponent or a recent alumnus of Dana White’s Contender Series would be more ideal.

He instead faces the top-15 Yusuff, who possesses the requisite technique and power to melt Shainis' jaw. Expect Shainis to acquit himself well, but he’ll become a little too aggressive and get caught with something nasty. Yusuff will be a bridge too far for Shainis on Saturday night, but there's still a bright future ahead for him inside the Octagon.

Prop Bet: Brown to win by decision (+140)

Brown is 12 years younger and on a three-fight winning streak, and he owns a considerable size and reach advantage over his Brazilian foe. He also lands more significant strikes per minute than Trinaldo and is the more accurate striker.

However, he won't close this one out within the distance. The ultra-durable “Massaranduba” hasn’t been stopped since 2017, and Trinaldo has only been finished three times over his 36-fight career.

There won't be a scintillating sequence to finish the bout. Expect Brown to instead use his size and reach to outwork Trinaldo while standing up for 15 minutes en route to a clear-cut unanimous decision victory.

Parlay: Barcelos (-230) + Brown (-320) + Yusuff to win by KO/TKO/DQ = +195

Where to Bet on UFC Vegas 61

Here are our top-rated sportsbooks:

FanDuel Sportsbook
Caesars Sportsbook
DraftKings Sportsbook
PointsBet
BetMGM

SEE ALSO: All picksodds, and sports betting news. Be sure to check out SportsbookReview.com’s community forums and betting tools.

UFC Vegas 61 best bets made on 10/1/2022 at 10:12 a.m. ET.