UFC Fight Night Betting Pick: Gabriel Benitez vs Justin Jaynes

Justin The Guitar Hero Jaynes is one of those fighters who would have probably never got his shot with the UFC if it weren’t for the COVID shutdowns forcing the company to put together multiple cards/week with much of their roster unable to travel.

Jaynes was right there in Las Vegas at Xtreme Couture sharpening his skills when he got the call to fight the massive heavy-hitting Frank Camacho a weight class up, on just a few days notice.

Justin put down his guitar, turned off the video game, and just a couple of days later, turned out the lights of Frank Camacho.

Jaynes opened as a 3 to 1 underdog and it took him just 20 seconds to put away the larger man who had put in a full camp. It was smart to come out guns blazing, though, because Jaynes knew that was probably his only shot to win.

The guy goes for it!

Now, will that help him or hurt him on Saturday night?

Gabriel Benitez is also coming off of a loss and is actually, in my opinion, one of the more underrated fighters in the UFC’s Featherweight Division. His left body kick is ferocious!

Shout out to the most ferocious of the all, Mike Tyson, on his aggressive and dominant performance against Roy Jones Jr this past weekend.

Former AKA stablemate and now retired Daniel Cormier stated that the head coach over there, Javier Mendez, said:

Nobody kicked harder than Benitez.

That is saying quite a bit when you think about someone like Luke Rockhold who trains there. He is well known to have one heck of a left kick himself and he is well north of 200 pounds.

Power kicker vs power puncher! I like this matchup. The online sportsbooks BetOnline.AG has the betting odds for this fight and these guys almost always will give you the best value. They release the lines the soonest as well.

Let’s make our prediction.

Gabriel Benitez (-211) vs Justin Jaynes (+181)

Benitez was just in there with a massive Lightweight Omar Morales and if Moggly hadn’t split his own shin kicking him so hard, he had a chance to win. Justin Jaynes is not even big for Featherweight. He carries a little bit of extra weight but I believe that helps his power.

Before that, he fought Super Sodiq Yusuff and that didn’t work out so well. Sodiq would blow through Jaynes easily. That betting line would be something like (-700) or something.

The point is that Benitez has been in there with much bigger and better competition than Jaynes-stronger wrestlers and fighters with more power in their hands.

Can he get caught, though?

Sure but I think he will control the range pretty well with his kicks.

Justin Jaynes likes to bob and weave a bit and I think that plays against him against such a good kicker.

The power on the kicks will probably break the ulna of Jaynes if it doesn’t catch his liver or cranium beforehand.

Please Note:
There is a cool counter to the left kick where you land with a left hook which is one of Jaynes’ best punches. It’s called slipping the kick and you essentially just get out ahead of the kick and move with it, taking that momentum towards your opponent’s chin and landing with a lead left hook.

Most of the power is generated from you moving your body through space and not so much the whip of the arm and with your opponent on one leg, there is less force loss to the ground when you hit them.

Jaynes may not be rangy enough to land this counter on a specialist, though.

Benitez out struck Jason Knight 83-36. That may not sound like much to you but Knight is legit and there aren’t many people who want to stand with this guy. Go back and watch his bare knuckle fight with Artem Lobov.

Not in front of your kids, though.

I think Gabriel should be a much larger favorite here and the only reason he isn’t is that he is coming off of two straight losses.

Both of those men are much better than Justin Jaynes, though.

My Pick
Gabriel Benitez

In Conclusion

Gabriel Moggly Benitez is a really exciting fighter! Hey, Jaynes is as well but I don’t think the company is going to bend over backward trying to keep him. I see a lowball offer when it’s negotiation time.

He probably signed a 3-fight deal with the company and this is the third.

He will be fighting hard because of this but you have to ask yourself…

Why did the UFC give him this fight?

They want you to lose in the last fight on your contract because it takes away your leverage. I think the company likes Gabriel Benitez. He is one of the best power kickers in the entire UFC.

A lot of guys fall in love with their hands and forget to kick. The high kick off of the arms is something that is far underutilized in today’s MMA.

Not only does it slow down your opponent’s punches but there is no takedown from there so it’s fairly risk free.

I think with no crowd in attendance, you will be able to hear the kicks clattering off the arms reminiscent of Lumpinee Stadium in the Golden Era.

Benitez controls the range with his legs and possibly puts away the game Justin Jaynes.

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.