It’s almost poetic that the UFC is closing out the shortest month of the year with another main event that will end up with an excess of 500 pounds of fighting beef in the main event of UFC Fight Night: Rozenstruik vs. Gane. These two heavyweight titans will be battling for closer proximity to the next contender’s spot for the 265-pound belt. It is a fitting culmination to the trilogy of headlining heavyweight battles we’ll have been treated to this month.
Other standouts on the event are peppered across the rest of the bout sheet, starting with the co-main event of Magomed Ankalaev vs. Nikita Krylov. These two light heavyweight powerhouses have well-rounded skillsets that could see this bout contested on the feet or the ground. One thing is certain, it is bound to produce fireworks. A pair of interesting rematches also grace the event, the first being a strawweight rematch between Angela Hill and Ashley Yoder, and the other being a bantamweight rematch between Jimmie Rivera and Pedro Munhoz. It really is a solid card with some chance for movement inside the rankings for the winners of a few of the matchups.
We’ve selected four fighters from the event that will illustrate why they are worthy of their lofty or budget-conscious price tags in an effort to help you select your DraftKings fantasy lineups. Let’s get started.
DraftKings is hosting a big UFC Fight Night fantasy MMA tournament that pays out $400K in guaranteed prizes, including $100,000 to first place. The fantasy MMA contest locks at 6:00 p.m. ET on Saturday. Set your DraftKings fantasy MMA lineups here: MMA $400K Throwdown [$100K to 1st].
Magomed Ankalaev, $9,300
Magomed Ankalaev isn’t just a well-rounded, skilled athlete. He’s an exceptionally talented, elite-level wrestler/grappler with the added benefit of possessing real power and an excellent striking game. He’s also durable, has a great gas tank and a sturdy chin. I know he got wild at the end of his fight with Paul Craig, and ended up snatching defeat from the jaws of victory after soundly trouncing the Scotsman for the vast majority of the fight, but I attribute that to a rookie mistake that he seems to have learned from.
Nikita Krylov could certainly repeat the success of Paul Craig, of that there is no doubt. He’s quite an accomplished submission specialist, but I think Ankalaev’s defensive tactics will be more than enough to weather the potential storm, not to mention he could end up stopping Krylov before he’s even able to mount any serviceable offense. This is a pretty wide margin in pricing, but in this instance, I believe it’s warranted.
Angela Hill, $9,200 This is a rematch 3.5 years in the making, and one that saw Angela Hill comfortably win the first fight via unanimous decision. Angie may be riding a two-fight losing skid, but it is arguable that she even lost those fights, both split-decisions that many feel should have gone her way. Hill is a volume striker, averaging 5.70 strikes per minute, but she has a go-for-broke style that also sees her eat 5.16 shots per minute. Her ground game has long been her weakest spot, but she’s come a long way since her entry to the UFC roster. Ashley Yoder has been trying to string together another successful string of wins and has already begun her quest by securing a victory over newcomer Miranda Granger. She’ll have her hands full with Hill, who is a good bit better in the standup, and may be evenly matched with her on the ground at this point. The pricing is a bit wide, and could stand to be a little closer, but I honestly don’t see this one going any different than the first time.
EDITOR’S NOTE: The Angela Hill-Ashley Yoder bout has been pulled from tonight’s UFC Fight Night card due to COVID-19 protocols.
Jairzinho Rozenstruik, $7,200
Jairzinho Rozenstruik at $7,200 is a certified bargain. I know that Gane has the conditioning and output to make this a really tough out for “Bigi Boy” but one must always remember that Jairzinho has finishing power all the way to the end. Let us not remember the way he turned Alistair Overeem into a stand-in for the Predator movies with just a few seconds left on the clock of a five-round fight. This after he lost every round of the fight to Alistair.
I know Cyril is a much more technical striker and has adapted his Muay Thai/kickboxing base to his MMA game better than just about anyone. His kicks really are a thing of beauty, but I digress. I also know that the Frenchman has very capable grappling, even boasting a trio of submissions on his pristine resume, but one cannot look past the great equalizer that Rozy packs, and at this insane price, it is nigh on impossible for me to pass up.
Montana De La Rosa, $7,800
Montana De La Rosa has a solid wrestling pedigree as the centerpiece of her budding skillset. A wonderful submission grappler with eight big wins by submission, she entered the UFC like a house afire, racking up three wins in a 13-month span. Then she hit a rough patch, going 1-2 in her next three fights, which brings us here, to the one on the table with her latest opponent, Mayra Bueno Silva, also a submission specialist with a solid grappling background. Silva has had less than half the fights De La Rosa has, but has submitted nearly as many, at five opponents.
The two women are pretty evenly matched physically, with both coming in at 5’7” and Montana carrying a two-inch reach advantage. Montana is an active takedown artist, averaging 1.96 takedowns per 15-minute bout, and 1.5 submission attempts in that same time frame. Silva will have to deal with MDLR spamming relentless takedowns that could end up taking a serious toll on her stamina. She’s not really exhibited any signs that she has weak cardio, but any time a strong wrestler is working toward getting you down constantly, there is the chance of running out of steam.
This is a very well-matched fight and the pricing is right on the money. It’s a contest that could go either way, but I feel like De La Rosa is slightly better and should take a hard-fought decision.
Put your knowledge to the test. Sign up for DraftKings and experience the game inside the game.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is crooklyn949) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above.
21+ (18+ NH). CO/IL/IN/IA/NH/NJ/PA/TN/VA/WV/MI only. Eligibility restrictions apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for full terms and conditions.