This feels like a very gross card for cash, in a sport where the optimal means of attack is already via MME. When a card has this sheer number of the lowest-level fighters in the promotion (apologies fighters, but many of you qualify), there’s a lesser degree of certainty in projections. My best advice is to fade cash here, but for those who don’t, let’s explore your options.
As I said in the fighter breakdown piece, this main event is certainly not stackable for cash, and what’s more, it’s completely fadeable. There aren’t any real value spots against the betting line, but the best one would be the all-format play of Ben Rothwell. Jeff Hughes has moved to the highest betting price on the card and brings some value, and has a better scoring range of outcomes than his salary piers of Junior Dos Santos and Tony Martin.
Drew Dober brings a cheap floor with his activity level and is in play, and Dan Moret could bring some grappling points as well at underdog pricing. From a ceiling perspective and while still having some degree of safety, Grant Dawson will score grappling points and be a real finish threat. Speaking of grappling points scored and even ignoring takedowns, Louis Smolka has 9-plus passes and reversals in three separate UFC fights and is very capable of scoring without finishing. I’m having a difficult time surmising how much ceiling Yana Kunitskaya brings, but her strong wrestling and activity level certainly brings a floor. It’s okay to leave salary on the table with this card, but understand it’s leaps easier said than done. If you feel a need to spend more, having the correct winner in either the Means/Price fight or the Akhmedov/Boetsch fight will bring a useful score.
You can see how I view exposures in the fighter breakdown piece, but there’s a thought that carries over from cash that should be applied here as well. With so many extremely low-level fighters on the card, you have to consider that any one of them could lose, more so than considering anyone can win. Variance is greater when a higher number of mistakes are made (shout out to Diego Sanchez and Mickey Gall). That said, I don’t think it’s prudent to full fade even a single fighter, with Martin being the first candidate for it, given his salary and style. I understand the tightness of the build suffers, but even having a few dart throw lineups for when a fighter without ceiling in 99 percent of iterations hits that one percent outcome, it keeps you alive for the big prize.
The first fight brings a hedge scenario. Alex White by KO at +280 with Moret by sub at +390 covers all high-percentage outcomes outside of the decision
- Hughes by KO at +270 is a great value.
- Dawson by sub at +455 is a massive value.
- Kunitskaya to win at -180 is a good value.
- Rothwell to win at +100 and Rothwell by KO at +455 are massive values.
If you want more action, you can easily surmise my leans in the fighter breakdown piece.
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Good luck and find a bink!