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UFC Fight Night: ‘The Dogs and Their Odds'

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UFC Fight Night: ‘The Dogs and Their Odds'

The Ultimate Fighting Championships (UFC) has reached it’s final ‘Fight Island’ event of July. Fans have been gifted with a stacked schedule of UFC events this month, last stop – Saturday night in Abu Dhabi. Read on for our underdog betting picks and free UFC predictions.

Carla Esparza vs. Marina Rodriguez

Saturday, July 25, 2020 – 10:35 PM EDT at UFC Fight Island

Carla Esparza 

  • Age: 28
  • Nationality: USA  
  • Record: 16-6-0
  • Height: 5ft 1”
  • Reach: 63”
  • Gym: Team Oyama 
  • Notable Gym Members: Ricky Simon, Marlon Vera & Alex Perez
  • Current Streak: 3 wins
  • Wins by KO/TKO: 3
  • Wins by Submission: 4
  • Decision wins: 9

Significant Strikes (UFC)

  • Landed Per Min: 2.30
  • Accuracy: 41%                               
  • Defence: 53%                                               

Grappling (UFC)

  • Takedown Average: 3.28
  • Takedown Accuracy: 33%
  • Takedown Defended: 48%

Often underrated and overlooked, Carla ‘Cookie Monster’ Esparza was the first female strawweight champion in the UFC but is continuously disrespected.

Now, back on track riding a three-fight win streak, maybe Esparza can remind fans & critics alike as to why she captured gold before anyone else. 

Marina Rodriguez

  • Age: 33
  • Nationality: Brazilian
  • Record: 14-2-0
  • Height: 5ft 6.”
  • Reach: 65”
  • Gym: Equipe Thai Brasil  
  • Notable Gym Members: N/A 
  • Current Streak: 1 draw 
  • Wins by KO/TKO: 5
  • Wins by Submission: 1
  • Decision wins: 6

Significant Strikes (UFC)

  • Landed Per Min: 5.60
  • Accuracy: 50%
  • Defence: 53%

Grappling (UFC)

  • Takedown Average: 0.48
  • Takedown Accuracy: 33%
  • Takedown Defended: 70%

A dangerous Muay-Thai stance & skill-set has pitted Marina Rodriguez as one of the most perilous new-comers to the UFC octagon. 

With under two years in the company, 33-year-old Marina has conjured up a 2 wins in the UFC with two ultra-close drawn fights to her name making the record 2-0-2. A big name ahead, can Marina put herself on the map with a significant win over the former champ?

At the end of the day

Marina has shown weakness during her two drawn fights against Randa Markos and Cynthia Calvillo; grappling/wrestling defence! It’s been difficult for Marina’s opponents to find success without any wrestling credentials. Still, those with an ounce of grappling in their repertoire have been able to nullify the dangerous striking she presents. 

Luckily for Carla, her bread & butter in the octagon is wrestling – beautiful single and double leg takedowns have pretty-much been the story of her career. 

The game-plan for both ladies is simple - one has to wrestle while the other relies on their striking—a classic striker versus grappler matchup where I have to favour the wrestling in Carla Esparza. 

Marina does present a severe clinch game with her Muay-Thai background, but Carla’s striking (specifically her jab) should be enough to control the distance and engage the takedowns at her own pace. 

UFC Fight Night Free Betting Pick: Carla Esparza to win by decision @ +180 with 5Dimes

Bethe Correia vs. Pannie Kianzad

Saturday, July 25, 2020 - 06:35 PM EDT at UFC Fight Island

Bethe Correia

  • Age: 37
  • Nationality: Brazil 
  • Record: 11-4-1
  • Height: 5ft 5”
  • Reach: 64”
  • Gym: CM System
  • Notable Gym Members: Elizeu Zaleski Dos Santos & Felipe Silva
  • Current Streak: 1 win
  • Wins by KO/TKO: 2
  • Wins by Submission: 0
  • Decision wins: 9

Back when Ronda Rousey put female martial arts on the map, there was a lack of female talent and fighters in general, but one name has remained since the beginning – Bethe Correira.

Former title challenger and victim of the Ronda Rousey KO, Bethe (much like Carla) is another UFC fighter who’s received a certain level of scrutiny over the years and for little reason. A high-output of strikes and never-quit attitude assisted Bethe with wins over Jessica Eye & Sijura Eubanks. 

Pannie Kianzad

  • Age: 28
  • Nationality: Sweden
  • Record: 12-5-0
  • Height: 5ft 7”
  • Reach: 68”
  • Gym: Arte Suave    
  • Notable Gym Members: Emil Meek & Damir Hadzovic 
  • Current Streak: 1 win 
  • Wins by KO/TKO: 3
  • Wins by Submission: 0
  • Decision wins: 9

At the end of the day

A common trend when looking at the career losses of Bethe is size disadvantage and she seems to shine when the reach favours her. Finding the range and landing a high output of strikes across fifteen minutes has prevailed for the Brazilian unless she’s suffered a reach disadvantage.  

Pannie Kianzad has shown a lower output of strikes than Bethe, but won’t allow Bethe to connect with high production as she has in the past. The size and reach of Pannie will favour her heavily in this matchup, and if the striking fails, I believe Pannie has the grappling advantage. Bethe has seemed to shy away from grappling exchanges and in her most recent bout with Eubanks, was taken down by an older/smaller competitor than what she’ll be up against this weekend. 

UFC odds for this contest are close, as expected. Bethe opened as a -105 favourite but was quickly shifted into underdog status by the betting public. Given that both girls win the majority of their contests via decision, we’ll turn Pannie’s favourable odds into underdog status with the decision prop. 

 Remember to find the best betting odds, finding value will dramatically affect your long-term betting investment.  

UFC Fight Night: Pannie Kianzad by decision @ +130 with BetOnline