UFC 238 Cejudo vs Moraes


The first thing I noticed about this card is there are not a lot of heavy favorites.  I decided to look into the numbers to see how often the favorites or the underdogs were victorious when the odds were relatively close.  On this particular card 10 of the 13 fights would be deemed “relatively close”.  The three exceptions are Eye/Shevchenko, Ansaroff/Suarez and Rivera/Yan.  I don’t want to get too deep into the numbers but on average fighters with odds of +100 to +180 were 5% more likely to win than the Vegas line would indicate.  What does that mean?  Well a fighter with +115 odds should win approximately 47% of the time, but on average wins 52% of the time.  This is probably a much more interesting detail for the betting world, but I think the take away for DFS is that underdogs in the +100 to +122 range are actually winning more than they are losing.  This is probably the best area to attack for value on Draftkings.  It also means on this card, outside of the three largest underdogs, everyone has a relatively decent shot at winning.  I am going to look to attack the fights that project to have the most activity and take the fighter that has the best value and fits my roster construction.

Favorite Favorite:  Tatiana Suarez

Suarez is James Harden of MMA for DFS.  She does it all.  She is a high volume striker, uses her takedowns, advances position and finishes fights.  Her fight log is ridiculous.  She will be on 100% of my lineups.  I don’t think ownership could be high enough that she isn’t the best play.

That is the only easy decision on this card.  If you choose to take another big favorite you will be rostering 4 sub 8k fighters.  I think Shevchenko and Yan are safe plays and if you love your 4 underdogs I have no problem going there.

Fight to Target:

Ferguson vs Cerrone

This should be a great fight.  And for Draftkings purpose I think you want to have one of these guys on your roster.  They both posses the potential for an early win and they both put out enough offense that with a decision they score big points.  Ferguson opened as big favorite at -293 but the line has come all the way down to -135.  Cerrone checks in at the +115 mark which we just learned makes him the more likely fighter to win this (even though that is just on average).  Cerrone has been so impressive in his last three fights putting up over 100+ DK points and he was the underdog in all three.  However Tony Ferguson has an eleven fight win streak and is also big scorer with 100+ DK points in 4 of his last 5 fights.  I think I am going to let the rest of my roster dictate which of these fighters I will use. 

Top Dog:  Ricardo Lamas

This pick has more to do with price and opponent then Lamas.  Calvin Kattar has not looked very impressive in his last two bouts.  He did get the win over Chris Fishgold in Oct 2018 but that was mostly capitalizing on Fishgold being overly aggressive and anxious in his first UFC bout.  In Apr 2018 Kattar lost a decision to Carneiro in which he looked pretty awful.  He only managed 41 SS while absorbing 116.  Lamas is not the most active fighter but he does use his takedowns and is active on the ground.  This fight is also in Lamas’ hometown so that should give him a little extra motivation to put on a good show. 

Fight to Fade:

Calderwood v Chookagian

This fade is mostly based on the style that Chookagian fights.  All of her UFC fights have gone to a decision and looking at her fight log you can see that her scores are very low.  In turn her opponents scores are low.  Calderwood does have a more active style but I think that is negated by Chookagian.  The winner of this fight projects for a score in the 60s and that is not what we are looking for.

Cheap Knockout:

Since we are looking for multiple underdogs on this card we need to find some guys with knockout potential.  Darren Stewart and Pedro Munhoz both fit that criteria.  Stewart has shown that he posses big power and he has a good ITD prop +222.  Munhoz is fresh off an exciting knockout of Cody Garbrandt.  Both of these fighters are the ultimate risk/reward plays.  Bevon Smith (vs Stewart) is a prospect for the UFC and looked really good in his first fight before getting tagged and knocked out.  Aljamain Sterling (vs Munhoz) is not the same type of fighter as Garbrandt.  He is not going to stand in there and battle it out with Munhoz.  That said if you are hunting for a cheap knockout one of these guys stands a good chance. 

Even Cheaper?:

Angela Hill provides some really good value if you find that you need someone at the cheapest price tag.  Like her opponent Yan Xiaonan, Hill is a high volume striker.  Hill has had over 100 SS in 4 of her last 5 fights.  (the lone exception was a first round submission loss).  While the win is in question Hill provides a really solid floor and if she is able to pull off the upset she has a good shot at 90+ points. 

I’ll be around the FTA chat this evening and tomorrow to talk more UFC.  Hope to see you there.

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