This article originally appeared on Lucky Trader: UFC Fight Night: Pavlovich vs. Blaydes DraftKings Reignmakers Breakdown.
This week, DraftKings Reignmakers is offering up $125,000 in prizes between its five tiers of contests: CORE, RARE, ELITE, LEGENDARY, and REIGNMAKER.
All players from DraftKings’ Heatwave, UFC 281, UFC 282, and Genesis sets are eligible to compete in these contests.
It is worth noting that the Genesis Standard, Genesis Premium, and Genesis CORE Add-On packs are all still available for purchase. These packs contain top UFC fighters and a random distribution of most of the fighters stepping into the octagon this weekend.
The UFC Fight Night: Sergei Pavlovich vs. Curtis Blaydes set goes on sale today, April 18, at 1 p.m. ET.
With that said, this article breaks down the best fighters to consider adding to your team via the Reignmakers’ marketplace. All listed prices refer to CORE tier unless otherwise noted, but the recommendations can be agnostically applied to all other tiers.
Below are the best fighters to roster for the upcoming UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs. Pavlovich event.
Karine Silva ($11 - Genesis)
Karine Silva is a Brazilian submission artist with knockout upside. She’s consistent on the feet, lets the takedowns come to her, and when the time is right, locks in a submission. She choked out both Yan Qihui and Poliana Botelho in her only two UFC fights, one via guillotine and one via D’Arce. This weekend, she gets an interesting matchup against Priscila Cachoeira, and she is a semi-sizable favorite at -190 on DraftKings Sportsbook. If Cachoeira wins, it won’t be inside the distance, but Silva could definitely pick up a submission or technical knockout. Her upside is one of the highest on this thrilling card.
Junior Tafa (N/A)
Junior Tafa has only seen the second round once in his short career and has never seen the third round. He is undefeated. This weekend, he gets a tough matchup against Mohammed Usman, who has five first-round finishes in his 10-fight career. Tafa has more upside inside the distance, and Usman has gone to decision before. This fight is extremely likely to end early, and picking a side will be important to cashing on DraftKings Reignmakers. Tafa has slightly more upside, so he gets the nod here, but Usman is also a good play.
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Below are the second-best fighters to roster for the upcoming UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs. Pavlovich event.
Note: This section usually lists bad fights to choose at the upcoming event, but this event is loaded with close and engaging matchups. No one on the card outside of Rani Yahya (Montel Jackson’s opponent) is a horrible play, so we’re shifting focus to more of the best plays.
Curtis Blaydes ($3.95 - Genesis)
Curtis Blaydes gets another tough matchup after beating Jairzinho Rozenstruik, Chris Daukaus, and Tom Aspinall in 2021 and 2022. Sergei Pavlovich is a knockout artist, and while Blaydes is no stranger to first-round knockouts, he will likely trend on the side of safety to start this longer five-round fight. Blaydes is a wrestler, and if he can plant Pavlovich on the mat, he has a much better chance of winning. Blaydes is averaging more than six takedowns per 15 minutes, and Pavlovich’s 68 percent takedown defense has never really been tested. He lost one time in the UFC to Alistair Overeem, and he was taken down in the first round. Since then, it has been all first-round knockouts. Blaydes is sharp enough to avoid the flurry of punches early and fight his fight.
Bobby Green ($18 - Booster)
Bobby Green has lost four of his last six fights, but in his two wins, against Nasrat Haqparast and Al Iaquinta, he found 188 significant strikes in the former and won via first-round knockout in the latter. This week, he gets one of his easier matchups yet against Jared Gordon, but Gordon never stops pushing the pace of the fight forward. With Gordon’s tenacity and Green’s fighting ability, he should see plenty of significant strikes and fantasy points. This is a high-upside fight that likely only ends one way – with Green’s hand raised in victory. But Gordon won’t go down without a high-scoring fight.
Below are the most obvious fighters to roster for the upcoming UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs. Pavlovich event.
Montel Jackson ($23 - Genesis)
Montel Jackson is the only fighter on this Saturday’s UFC Fight Night card who is greater than -500 to win his fight. Jackson has submissions to rely on (he choked out Brian Kelleher via a D’Arce), but he’ll prefer his hands against Rani Yahya. Yahya is a submission specialist that rarely goes to decision in his victories. Jackson likely wins via decision if it gets there, but he has plenty of knockout upside prior to the final bell. Yahya’s striking defense is horrendous, and Jackson has solid takedown defense. He should be able to fend off Yahya’s desperate attempts to take this fight to the ground and finish the fight.
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