Monday MMA Mashup – May 3

Reyes Vs Prochazka Monday Mashup

Wow, what an event this past weekend we just had! I thought that maybe coming off the heels of one of the best shows of all time, UFC 261 in front of fans, we would have a hangover show.

That was not the case at all! Stars shined! We got to see fighters like Sean Strickland, Merab Dvalishvili, and Giga Chikadze all with breakout performances. I think the three men have something like a combined 16 consecutive victories between them.

These are all potential title challengers in their potential weight classes. Unfortunately, though, their performances were overshadowed by the main event. You can count on me to mention these fighters but most of the public and the media were focused on the big win from Jiri Prochazka.

The Czech star proved that is most certainly a problem in the UFC’s Light Heavyweight Division. What is next for Jiri? A title shot is being talked about but I think the UFC is forgetting about another massive European light heavyweight, Alexander Rakic.

I think that is the matchup to make but we will see.

From a betting perspective, this past Saturday’s Las Vegas Fight Night was a massive success. We went 8-1 on the night with our only loss was a (+200) 0.5 unit stab on Sean Strickland to get the finish.

It was a little foolish considering Krys Jotko’s non-fighting style but I still thought Sean would unload and drop him up against the side of the Octagon. The Pole had been stopped twice before so I’m trying not to beat myself up too bad about it.

That is the thing with gambling.
If you’re in this for fun, I don’t know what to tell you because I can win 8, lose 1 like we did and I am still hung up on the loss. I am not doing this for fun, though. I want to be the best.

I can’t be the best at Muay Thai. I’m 39. I am terrible with machines and construction work, anything mechanical. Jiu Jitsu is a lot of fun but the leg locks annoy me and I’m barely a purple belt after 12 years of training on and off.

I’m not going to be the best at anything except for this. It sounds cocky and arrogant but I am serious. There is no reason we can’t have the highest level UFC betting blog and predictions on the entire internet.

I don’t have a lot of inside knowledge like some of my colleagues but we are working on that. These past 6 months have taught me that with the right amount of focus and if I am in the right environment, we can be very successful!

Over this time, we have turned things around after an atrocious Summer from May through September where we barely stayed above water.

From October 16th, 2020 until now, we have a win-loss record betting UFC fights of 91-59. That is 150 betting plays of somewhere around 25 events. That is about 6 plays per week. I like to stay around 3-4 if I am trying to snipe but we have been so hot that more bets have just led to more profit.

So, what, though?

A winning percentage of 60% could mean that we still have a return on our investment of 0 or even less. If we are betting on mostly (-250) favorites and this ROI is based on each play we give out being 1 unit so if the line is (-250), then we are only taking home 40 bucks but if we lost that play, we only lose one unit and not 2.5.

We have evolved our UFC betting game, though, into one that much  much stronger than it used to be. Wagering 150 units over the past 6.5 months, we have profited 57+ units. That is a very very good number.

I want you guys to do me a favor. Google “What is a good ROI for a professional sports bettor?” Here. I will save you the trouble.

“The consensus, according to surveys of actual sports bettors indicates that a figure of 5% over 1,000 plays is considered an excellent ROI. In fact, this figure ranks a sports bettor in the same league as a bookmaker which assumes a vigorish of 5%.”

Our return on investment wagering 1 unit per UFC bet is 38% over the past 6 months.

Okay, so we don’t have 1000 plays. This is just from 150. We can go back, though, for about a total of 18.5 months and see our ROI for the past 409 UFC betting plays. We have certainly improved our process and thus our results since then but 19.7% is still outstinkinstanding.

Please Note:
1000 plays will take a while but let’s not focus on trying to cling to the 20% and push that number closer and closer to 30%. I refuse to put limits on myself here. I believe we can be the very best and that in and of itself sets us apart from 80% of our colleagues.

Let’s review each of our betting plays from last week and also look ahead to this Saturday’s UFC betting action from the company’s Apex facility in Las Vegas.

UFC Fight Night Las Vegas Betting Review

Loma Lookboonme vs Sam Hughes

We had Loma as a third parlay piece behind the Merab and Stamann fight to go to a decision and Sean Strickland to get the victory. It can be frustrating with Loma because she is certainly out-sized by just about everyone she fights.

The former Muay Thai world champion is a natural Atomweight which is 105 pounds and the UFC just doesn’t have a division for those ladies, yet. I think they should ditch the 145 pound Featherweight Division for the women and kick off the 105ers with a tournament or possibly another Ultimate Fighter show to introduce the world to some new ladies.

Sam Hughes is an excellent athlete who was able to dart in and out landing one pot shot at a time. That is a classic way to fight a Thai. I know this because I have had to do the same thing just to survive in there.

The scouting report didn’t fail us, though, as we knew Sam had a very bad habit of initiating the clinch after her forward pressure and punching. That was the worst thing she could have done because Loma, even out-sized, dominated her in the clinch with knees and takedowns.

Loma won rounds 1 and 2 fairly comfortably and while she lost the third, I felt very confident that she was going to get a unanimous decision and she did.

Loma made up the third leg of a parlay that paid out at (+144).

Luana Pinheiro vs Rando Markos

We took a chance here on a UFC debutant, Brazil’s Luana Pinheiro, to get the win over wily veteran, the Canadian Randa Markos.

Luana has an unbelievable Judo pedigree having grown up on the mats as her dad was a world champion. Pinheiro got her start in the martial arts at the age of 2. She looked outstanding in this fight throwing Randa literally on her head more than once.

In the second round, though, Markos hit her with an upkick while she was still grounded and it appeared that the Brazilian took full advantage of the situation and acted more hurt than she actually was.

I can’t tell anyone how to make money but they say perception is 9/10 of the law and most fighters and coaches perceived what she did to be an act or at least an exaggeration.

Either way, though, I think we were on our way to a win because Luana was dominating this fight. I suppose she could have gassed out but she seemed to be trucking along just fine. I still consider this a clean victory for us.

Her betting odds of (-160) paid us out fairly well without a ton of risk. I liked this spot before and it played out mas o menos how we predicted it would go.

Merab Dvalishvili vs Cody Stamann

We cashed in big time here! I thought this was an excellent spot for betting because both fighters are very consistent, neither has a ton of punching power, and both have very durable chins.

Their respective cardio’s checked out so throwing these two on a parlay to go to a decision was one of our strongest spots. They were (-250) to take this one to the judges’ scorecards and we were paid out at even money for parlaying these odds with those of Sean Strickland.

We added Loma Lookboonme and got (+144). Then we added Luana Pinheiro and were paid at more than 3 to 1! Sensational night for parlays and they all hit without too much worry.

I can’t lie, though. Merab and Cody had me worried as they were throwing DOWN!

This is especially true for Merab who looked like for the first time in his career that he wanted the knockout.

Once again, the scouting reports held up and we were paid off. We also had 2 units on Merab to win a decision at (-135) and we also parlayed that with the fight to go to a decision betting line for another (+143).

So, we had four parlays and a straight play riding on this fight. I know that is a lot and it could have gone terribly wrong but we were betting on one of the best takedown and control artists in the UFC against an opponent with virtually no knockout or submission threat.

Cody’s strength is wrestling and Merab had him beat there.

Sean Strickland vs Krys Jotko

What can we say about Sean Strickland? What a psycho, right?

He is 100% my new favorite fighter so if he gets a big step up in competition, watch out for my bias if I pick him! I’m kidding but seriously, I do believe in this guy.

He is incredibly intelligent, has a zero nonsense approach to the game, and enough determination to take down the Ottoman Empire if that was still a thing. I love listening to the guy talk and enjoy his fights even more.

I felt like he was just the better mixed martial artist than Jotko and it would show everywhere this fight went and that is exactly what we saw. It was a slow first couple of minutes but eventually Strickland was walking him down.

Jotko must have traveled a couple of miles in that fight backpedaling like his name was Justin Gaethje in a fight with Khabib.

This was a super clean win and much needed for 3 different winning parlays.

Sean was responsible, yes you Sean-your fault, for our sole loss on the night. We took Sean Strickland to get the finish against Jotko and he wasn’t able to do it.

Please Note:
He hit the guy clean a lot but most of them were while the Pole was backing up.

Sean throws mostly straight punches as well which are less effective than a looping punch when your opponent is moving backwards. That’s okay, though. It is always a pleasure watching this man fight!

Giga Chikadze vs Cub Swanson

The Giga kick!

This guy! How can you not love Giga Chikadze?

I suppose if you are a big fan of Cub Swanson, you might not like the guy so much right now but you have to respect him. The Georgian-born former GLORY Kickboxer is now 5-0 fighting inside of the Octagon and has his sights set on the title.

Giga called out Max Holloway in the post fight press conference and said he would take Calvin Kattar if he couldn’t get “Blessed”. I don’t know if he has quite earned that spot yet but I admire his style.

Giga isn’t scared of the mountaintop but he will likely have to clean out some wolf dens on his way to the summit.

We had Giga parlayed with Sean Strickland to get the win here and it paid pretty well at (+116). Chikadze was not a bad straight pick at all either but for some reason, I was super confident early in the week and parlayed him up.

It worked out but historically, my predictions late in the week are better than those that come on a Monday or earlier. With that being said, though, I went with Giga early against Venezuela’s Omar Morales only to hear every last one of my colleagues disagree with me.

Giga won that fight fairly comfortably and at dog odds as well.

That was one fight I was glad I picked and betted on early in the week.

Jiri Prochazka vs Dominick Reyes

Check out referee Herb Dean inspecting the hairstyle of Jiri Prochazka before the fight.

What a savage, this guy! Jiri is a forward fighting psychopath who does not at all mind taking one or even two to give one. He has a great deal of power and his punches because they are thrown from a hands down position, come from all angles.

He is a little easier to hit this way but his offense is so strong with this style, it is going to be hard to defeat him. He was caught in a pretty tight guillotine by Dominick Reyes and the commentators were quick to point out that his hair was going to make it hard to escape the choke.

He had to pop that whole thing out and I am sure it hurt but he did it and went on to win the fight in absolutely devastating fashion with a spinning elbow that he called “Just the flow”. We were on Jiri’s moneyline of (-125).

I was really surprised to see it there. I know Dom is dangerous and Jiri is still fairly unproven in the UFC but getting the superior and much more experienced martial artist at almost even money was something I wasn’t going to turn down.

Betting Performance on the Night
  • 8 wins-1 loss
  • Over 9 units profited
  • 102% return on our investment

UFC Fight Night Las Vegas Betting Preview

Tafon Nchuckwi vs Jun Yong Park

Tafon The Don! He won us some money in his UFC debut and now the Team Lloyd Irvin product out of Cameroon is looking to improve upon that performance in his sophomore sesh.

Standing across the Octagon from him will be South Korea’s Jun Yong Park. Park is primarily a boxer who showed us in his last fight he doesn’t mind mixing in some takedowns to get the win.  I like that but it came against John Philips who has maybe the worst takedown defense in the entire UFC. Taking down Tafon the Don will not be so easy. I promise you guys this.

I have heard of some cappers taking the Korean here but I just don’t see it. He has good boxing but not a great deal of punching power. The Korean will likely be the quicker of the two men and have more speed on his strikes. Timing beats speed, though, and Tafon has some of the best. I think Nchukwi dominates in the clinch as well. He clinches like a Thai fighter throwing hard knees, slicing elbows, and even trips and dumps like we saw from Loma Lookboonme this past Saturday night.

Tafon will have the strength advantage as well and the only way I see him losing this fight is if he doesn’t cut the cage off, follows his opponent, and falls victim to the little pot shots and jabs as Park circles for 3 rounds.

Nchukwi is too well coached for that and after seeing him fight inside of the Octagon before, I feel confident in his fight IQ to make solid decisions.

Right now, you can get Tafon The Done Nchukwi for as cheap as (-135) at BetOnline.AGBetOnline.AG! Guys, I think this is an exceptional price.

I really don’t understand all the love coming in for Park.

In Tafon’s debut, he fought a very tough Jamie Pickett who was the much larger man frame wise and Nchukwi not double but TRIPLED him up in significant strikes landed 120 to 40! Tell me why he is just a (-135) favorite again…

Please enlighten me.

The Bets

Gregor Gillespie vs Diego Ferreira

Ol’ Greg is back!

I guess you had to have been there. Gregor Gillespie is one of the best takedown artists in the UFC and he has a chance on Saturday to get his first win after his first UFC loss being knocked out by Kevin Lee with a high kick.

Diego Ferreira is a very strong fighter and grappler himself being a BJJ black belt but I don’t think it will be enough to counter the top control of the New Jersey native.

Diego was taken down and controlled in his last fight with Benny Dariush, one where we picked Benny correctly.

So, why won’t a more decorated wrestler be able to do the same thing?

Well, Benny is a very good black belt himself so defending subs, sweeps, and stand ups were much easier than if he was just a wrestler. Ol Greg has been at this a while, though, and I would be very surprised to see him get subbed by Ferreira.

It would also be quite surprising to see Diego defend all of Greg’s takedowns. I don’t see either happening and thus, I like Greg to get the win here likely by decision.

His betting odds of (-175) are still affordable so jump on them now. Don’t waste any time!

The Bets

In Conclusion

We had another extraordinary week betting on the UFC!

I can’t wait to do it again! As soon as the show was over on Saturday night, I was too excited for bed so I just busted out the fight tape and started getting ahead of my peers for this week’s action.

There are a lot of interesting matchups on the horizon for the winners of last week’s event including a possible Kevin Holland and Sean Strickland fight.

They both love to talk but one is entirely serious and the other can’t stop joking.

This is a very interesting stylistic matchup as well with both men being strikers of slightly different styles and frames.

Maybe we will handicap that one in a blog soon because the UFC isn’t stupid. This IS the fight to make for both guys and they are each such gangsters, I know they will take it.

As far as betting value early in the week, I love Tafon Nchukwi at (-135). I think this line should be (-220) if that tells you anything about how confident I am in The Don.

I like Gregor Gillespie also but he is fighting a legit guy in Diego Ferreira. You can’t compare Jun Yong Park to Diego.

Get your bets in now and let’s continue our winning ways with another profitable week in UFC betting!


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Mike Pruitt / Author

Mike has been covering sports professionally since 2017 but on the amateur scene for 25 years since when he was 12. Before the internet changed the world, he would keep detailed statistical box scores of NFL and NBA contests, write recaps, and voluntarily commentate games and fights alone in his room. Mike's military experience, Bachelors Degree, and employment thereafter were always rooted in engineering, science, and teaching. Now he enjoys being able to express himself through writing about football, golf, and car racing among other sports but most of all fighting as his life has been rooted in mixed martial arts including competing and teaching for the past 15 years.