UFC on FOX 20 MMA DFS Picks
UFC on FOX 20 heads to United Center in Chicago, Ill. for an 11-fight card Saturday night. The highlight of the evening will be the return of ‘The Preacher’s Daughter’, Holly Holm, as she squares off against Valentina Shevchenko in a women’s bantamweight battle. There will be plenty of eyes on the lightweight tussle between Edson Barboza and Gilbert Melendez, too. The bantamweight fight between Frankie Saenz and Eddie Wineland will also be a war worth watching.
Lastly, if you set your lineups early and had a fighter in the George Sullivan-Hector Urbina battle, that bout has been canceled as Sullivan was pulled from the card due to a potential anti-doping issue.
Play in Win $2,000 for minimal investment at DraftKings.com — If you’re feeling confident, for $3 you have a chance at a $2,000 top prize, and $30,000 guaranteed money. Build that bankroll up with minimal risk! (DraftKings.com salaries in parentheses) (all times ET).
Francis Ngannou ($11,500 vs. Bojan Mihaljlovic): Ngannou (-650) is the biggest favorite on the board, according to Vegas, and the Frenchman is a big-time striker and solid defender against the takedown. He’ll enter this match with a size and strength advantage, towering over Mihaljlovic with a five-inch height advantage and 15 pounds in weight. ‘The Predator’ is an up-and-coming prospect in UFC’s heavyweight class. Since making his UFC debut Dec. 19, 2015, he has a KO/TKO and TKO due to doctor’s stoppage under his belt, as he destroyed Curtis Blaydes at UFC Fight Night April 10 last time out. He’ll make quick work of Mihaljlovic in this one, too.
Frankie Saenz ($10,000 vs. Eddie Wineland): Saenz is looking to wash the sour taste out of his mouth following a unanimous decision loss against Urijah Faber last time out in UFC 194. That loss put the brakes on a seven-game win streak. He’ll face Wineland, who hasn’t fought since UFC on FOX 16 after suffering a broken jaw, has two straight losses and three setbacks in four bouts. Saenz is a solid fighter who averages 4.28 significant strikes per minute with an average of 2.25 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 40.9, but the one knock against him for DFS purposes is that plenty of his bouts fall to the judge’s decision rather than wins via knockouts or submissions.
Kamaru Usman ($10,800 vs. Alexander Yakovlev): Usman steps in for an injured Ryan LaFlare, and he is a big favorite (-295) despite the short notice. He enters the bout on a six-fight winning streak, and four of the bouts ended via TKO with an arm-triangle submission sprinkled in. The ‘Nigerian Nightmare’ is a heavy hitter averaging 2.96 significant strikers per minute with an accuracy percentage of 59.6 percent. He also has a significant 76-inch reach which keeps opponents at a distance. However, when he wants to get in close he is a fantastic takedown specialists and outstanding on the mat, too. Yakovlev will be overmatched and this one is ending before the middle of Round 2.
Jason Knight ($8,800 vs. Jim Alers): Knight carries a 16-2 record into this match. While he suffered a unanimous decision loss at Tatsuya Kawajiri at the TUF 22 Finale, he should feel confident against Alers. He has a three-inch height advantage and the featherweight has posted 1.87 significant strikes per minute. He is an outstanding puncher and good grappler, and he’ll be looking to put Alers down on the mat early and often. ‘The Kid’ will rebound with a victory, making him a tremendous value as a No. 4 fighter on your DFS roster.
James Moontasri ($8,700 vs. Alex Oliveira): Moontasri heads into this event facing a difficult opponent, but one he could handle. ‘Moonwalker’ rebounded with a first-round KO/TKO of Anton Zafir at UFC 193 after being choked out against Kevin Lee at UFC Fight Night July 15, 2015. He has 2.86 significant strikes per minute with a near 50-50 accuracy percentage. Seven of his nine victories have come via stoppage, but it’s a tall order against Oliveira, who has never lost back-to-back fights. As a No. 5 DFS option, however, Moontasri has some upside and could put Oliveira’s lights out early with a quick strike.