Tatiana Suarez vs. Montana De La Rosa
In the second fight on the main card, there is a women’s flyweight bout between Tatiana Suarez and Montana De La Rosa. With all due respect to De La Rosa, there is a massive gap in the abilities between these two athletes, which is why Suarez is priced as a massive -770 betting favorite. Not only is Suarez one of the most clinical strikers in the flyweight division, but her grappling is also among the best. Landing 4.82 strikes per minute at an astounding 65% accuracy, Suarez boasts the advantage on the feet as De La Rosa responds with 2.60 strikes landed per minute at 37% accuracy.
However, there is an even bigger discrepancy in the grappling department, which is the route Suarez will likely take in this scrap. The former TUF champion is a grappling machine, landing 6.47 takedowns per 15 minutes, which is a big reason why three of her last seven wins came via submission. After a three-and-a-half-year hiatus from the UFC, look for Suarez to pick up right where she left off and submit De La Rosa early in this fight.
Prediction: Tatiana Suarez wins via Submission (+225 at Bovada)
Best Bet: Tatiana Suarez wins Inside the Distance (+105 at BetOnline)
Augusto Sakai vs. Don’Tale Mayes
Immediately following the Suarez/De La Rosa fight, there is a men’s heavyweight bout between Augusto Sakai and Don’Tale Mayes. Despite entering this matchup amidst a four-fight losing streak, Sakai is still priced as the -120 betting favorite. The main reason for this pricing is the level of competition Sakai has faced, including his losses to Serghei Spivac (current #7 contender in the heavyweight division), Tai Tuivasa (#5), and Jairzinho Rozenstruik (#9). However, he has also beaten some big names, including Blagoy Ivanov (#15) and Marcin Tybura (#10).
This level of competition is far greater than Mayes’ resume, who has not faced a ranked heavyweight outside of Ciryl Gane, a bout in which he got dominated. Grappling is Mayes’ biggest weakness, getting dominated in the grappling department by Hamdy Abdelwahab, Rodrigo Nascimento, and Ciryl Gane. If Sakai implements that wrestling, then he could coast his way to a decision victory. Two of Sakai’s last three wins are via decision, and with Mayes’ strong chin, that is a result we could see once again.
Prediction: Augusto Sakai wins via Decision (+285 at BetOnline)
Best Bet: Augusto Sakai moneyline (-120 at BetOnline)