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UFC Fight Night Cheat Sheet: DraftKings MMA DFS Picks, Predictions for November 7

Stephie Haynes preps you for Saturday’s UFC slate with key factors and winning trends for your DraftKings fantasy MMA lineups.

The UFC is in Las Vegas at their APEX Center for UFC Fight Night: Santos vs. Teixeira this Saturday evening. The headliner is likely for a No. 1 contender spot to determine who will face the winner of Israel Adesanya vs. Jan Blachowicz, since that superfight has already been announced. Glover Teixeira might be 41 years old, but he’s been performing at the highest level and is on a four-fight win streak. Thiago Santos will be back after more than a year away due to injuries he sustained in his fight with Jon Jones. The rest of the card is typical fight night fodder with plenty of names we recognize mixed in with some fresh faces we might not be overly familiar with.

We’ve prepared a handy guide to help make choosing your DraftKings fantasy MMA lineups a little easier. Let’s take a look at some of the standouts from this card.


DraftKings users can enter to win big prizes in Saturday’s fantasy MMA $400K November Throwdown contest, which pays out a guaranteed $400,000, including $100K to first place. Set your DraftKings fantasy MMA lineups here: MMA $400K November Throwdown [$100K to 1st].

DraftKings users can also get in on the UFC action by betting on DraftKings Sportsbook or by downloading the DraftKings Sportsbook app.



STRIKERS

Xiaonan Yan, $8,300

Xiaonan is a marvelous talent hailing from China. She’s an orthodox volume striker with a crisp jab she throws pretty much non-stop, averaging a hefty 6.72 strikes/minute while only absorbing 3.88 in that same time frame, denoting her solid defense. She’ll need to stay busy against Claudia Gadelha ($7,900), who is an excellent striker in her own right, but tends to fade in the latter half of her fights. If Xiaonan keeps up the pressure, she can sap Claudia’s stamina down the stretch. Yan is also a very good grappler, especially defensively, which will come in handy, as Gadelha has a very active ground game herself.

*Alexandr Romanov, $9,000


KNOCKOUT KINGS

Thiago Santos, $8,800

Thiago Santos, to put it quite simply, is a power station. He can generate lots of voltage in both his hands and his feet, causing more than one opponent to end up separated from consciousness or doubled over after having their liver decimated by one of his kicks. His defense isn’t rock solid, but it’s not terrible. He’ll need to be extra cautious with Glover Teixeira ($7,400), who is well-versed on the ground and on the feet. And while Glover might be getting a little long in the tooth, he is still exceedingly dangerous. “Marreta” has 15 wins by knockout, but he is quite capable of going the distance if need be. This has all the makings of an epic battle.

Glover Teixeira, $7,400

Glover Teixeira, 41, has been kicking butt and taking names for nearly two decades, and he doesn’t look like he has plans to stop or even slow down anytime soon, especially with a title shot seemingly within reach if he gets the win over Santos. Teixeira is a well-rounded, crafty fighter who keeps a good work rate, has excellent standup, equally good grappling, and despite having a softening chin—Father Time is undefeated—he has been able to overcome some close calls and scares over his last several fights, a testament to his recuperative ability. Glover has very heavy hands, with 18 knockouts on his resume, but is also a ground ace, notching another eight finishes by submission. This is such a great headliner!

Andrei Arlovski, $7,300

Andrei Arlovski is another of the UFC’s elder statesmen that’s still managing to secure wins after 40 years of age. After spending many years under the watchful eye of Greg Jackson, Andrei ended up making the move to American Top Team a couple years ago and has seen some success since being with that renowned camp. Once upon a time, Arlovski was one of the most feared strikers in the UFC with 17 knockouts to his credit, but it’s been more than five years since his last knockout—not to say he can’t score another—but he has become much more of a measured, patient fighter, playing the role of counter-striker as frequently as aggressor. He’s also learned to protect his eroding chin, suffering only one knockout in 10 fights (Jairzinho Rozenstruik). Tanner Boser ($8,900) is a young, powerful athlete with a lot of upside, so Andrei is going to have his hands full, but anything can happen.

Tanner Boser, $8,900

Tanner Boser is a Canadian powerhouse with a bona fide rocket launcher of a right hand. Tanner is quite active, clocking in 4.54 strikes/minute while only absorbing 2.85 in those same 60 seconds. He might not look like it, but “The Bulldozer” is actually pretty nimble, and covers distance quickly. He’s also the owner of a very sturdy chin, having only been knocked out once in a career with 26 fights. Currently 3-1 inside the octagon and on a two-fight streak, Tanner has become a prolific finisher, logging three knockouts in his last five fights. This fight is clearly designed to boost Boser’s visibility off a win over a solid name like Arlovski.


SUBMISSION THREATS

Alexandr Romanov, $9,000

Alexandr Romanov is a Moldovan southpaw steamroller who has a perfect 12-0 record, all by finish. This fight with Marcos Rogerio de Lima ($7,200) was booked a while back, but COVID-19 issues caused its postponement. Romanov has five knockouts to his credit, but his seven submissions (most by neck crank or forearm choke) are the reason he landed here on this list. He has raw, unpolished striking, but he’s very active, landing around 5.87 strikes/minute, earning him a spot on our strikers list, as well. “King Kong” is quick and surprisingly fluid in his transitions despite his hulking size, so if and/or when this fight hits the ground, we will get a good accounting of how good his submission game is against a seasoned veteran, and one with better striking than past opponents, especially Roque Martinez, who was beaten so badly by Romanov it was almost hard to watch.

Anthony Birchak, $8,200

Anthony Birchak has made his way back into the UFC fold after a four-year hiatus that resulted in a trio of losses followed most recently by a trio of wins. Now, the 34-year-old will be taking on fellow teammate and friend, Gustavo Lopez ($8,000), a well-rounded finishing machine with 10 finishes (five KOs and five submissions). Birchak is an orthodox fighter with fantastic grappling chops, with eight submissions and five knockouts. He’s fast and scrappy and is crafty and slick on the ground, with very fluid transitions and a pretty aggressive submission game. He’s battle tested and maybe even a little shopworn, but this fight is well-matched and an absolute banger to open the card.

GAS GUZZLERS

*This category is for the athletes that have demonstrated stamina/cardio issues.

Claudia Gadelha, $7,900

Marcos Rogerio de Lima, $7,200

Darren Elkins, $8,700

Set your DraftKings fantasy MMA lineups here: MMA $400K November Throwdown [$100K to 1st].

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