This Saturday, UFC’s first FOX card of the year takes place in Charlotte, North Carolina, and is headlined by the rematch between Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza vs Derek Brunson, a fight we previously previewed. In the co-main event, Dennis Bermudez faces off against Andre Fili in a featherweight tilt, while the undercard sees hot lightweight prospect Gregor Gillespie hoping to continue his ascension up the ranks against Jordan Rinaldi.
Last week’s Best Bets for UFC 220 continued our winning wagering momentum. Not only did we hit on some underdogs like Stipe Miocic (+155), and Dustin Ortiz (+135), but we hit all our prop bets and made a healthy profit on our Ortiz/Miocic parlay. If you followed all of the suggested wagers, you wound up with a profit of $111.25, and that doesn’t even count the props.
Things get a bit trickier this week. Not only does UFC on FOX 27 have minimum sizzle, there also isn’t much in the way of meat to chew on when it comes to wagering. Being a successful long-term MMA bettor is about discipline, and some fight cards just don’t have bargains. This is one of those cards. But there are still a couple decent options.
Best Overall Bets
Ji Yeon Kim (+225) vs. Justine Kish (-285): women’s flyweight
Coming off a tough decision loss to Lucie Pudilova in her UFC debut last June, Ji Yeon Kim (6-1-2) has made the move to flyweight where she faces a tough but limited fighter in Justine Kish (6-1).
Kish, who lost her last fight to Felice Herrig, used to throw her weight around in the strawweight division (115 pounds). But now that she has taken a step up to flyweight (125 pounds), it may not be as easy for the 29-year-old American to bully her opponents into submission.
Kim has some decent stand-up (4.00 strikes landed per minute) but her toolbox isn’t exactly overflowing with skills. Lucky for her, Kish’s stand-up (3.62 strikes landed per minute) is plodding and slow; if Kim can stay out of the clinch, she should be able to work her 72″ reach advantage and land the better combinations.
If Kim fights smart she should come out on the other side with a decision win. On a card that’s short on bargains, this +225 moneyline bet is worth a minimum wager.
My bet: $25 on Ji Yeon Kim (+225)
Potential payout: $56.25 profit
Joaquim Silva (-120) vs. Vinc Pichel (-110): lightweight
Vinc Pichel (10-1) has been relatively inactive, missing all of 2013, 2015, and 2016, but he enters this fight on a three-fight win streak, including a one-punch knockout win over Damien Brown. His opponent, Joaquim “Neto BJJ” Silva (10-0), is undefeated in the Octagon and is coming off a close win over Reza Madadi last May.
Pichel should be able to use his height and reach advantage to avoid Silva’s dangerous stand-up game. As long as Pichel stays busy and throws some nice combinations to set up a takedown or two, he should be able to control from top position and win via decision.
There is some value on Pichel at -110.
My bet: $25 on Vinc Pichel (-110)
Potential payout: $22.73 profit
Best Prop Bets
We did extremely well last week on our prop bets and this is where we may strike gold once again.
Niko Price wins via stoppage (-115)
Niko Price (10-1) is not only eight years younger than George Sullivan (17-5), he’s also larger and packs far more power in his punches. This is a tough matchup for Sullivan who is coming off a two-year layoff and the first knockout loss of his career. I see Price finishing Sullivan in this fight, most likely by knockout. Put a few dollars on a Price stoppage at -115.
Niko Price vs. George Sullivan: UNDER 1.5 rounds (+150)
Not only do I see Niko Price finishing George Sullivan, but the UNDER of 1.5 rounds at +150 is worth taking a look at. Out of Price’s 10 wins, eight have ended in the first round. Take it and bake it.
Gregor Gillespie wins via stoppage (+140)
The undefeated Gillespie (10-0) will be facing a tough North Carolina native in Jordan Rinaldi, but this is a terrible matchup for Rinaldi. Gillespie is one of the UFC’s top prospects and is capable of winning this fight on the mat or on the feet. Out of this ten wins, eight have been via finish. Take the +140.
Best Parlay Plays
There really isn’t a lot to get excited about parlay-wise on this card, but there are a couple of options that could work out.
My bet: $25 on Vinc Pichel (-110) + Niko Price vs. George Sullivan UNDER 1.5 rounds (+150)
Potential payout: $94.32
My bet: $25 on Ji Yeon Kim (+240) + Derek Brunson (+100)
Potential payout: $145.00
Let's have fun and keep it civil.