UFC Fight Night Picks, Odds, Betting Splits: DraftKings MMA DFS Cheat Sheet for February 19
Saturday’s UFC Fight Night card received a substantial overhaul at the top, losing the original main event between Rafael dos Anjos and Rafael Fiziev. That fight will now serve as the co-main event for UFC 272 on March 5. Instead, Saturday’s card is now headlined by a light heavyweight bout between Jamahal Hill and Johnny Walker.
The main card begins at 7:00 p.m. ET with a potential firefight between Joaquin Buckley and Abdul Razak Alhassan. Buckley and Alhassan both have great punching power and this fight is very likely to feature a knockout because DraftKings Sportsbook gave the Exact method of victory: KO/TKO/DQ -330 odds for this fight. The main event between Hill and Walker is also expected to end in a knockout, with odds of -400.
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Value Play: Abdul Razak Alhassan ($7,900)
It should be noted for this fight that Alhassan recently switched fight camps, moving to Elevation Fight Team, which is one of the top camps in the sport and includes fighters such as Justin Gaethje, Cory Sandhagen, Neil Magny and Curtis. Blaydes. UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman also trained with Team Elevation to prepare for his title fight against Gilbert Burns, and Alhassan said Usman was the one who suggested he switch sides. . It’s a big step for Alhassan’s career and the move to Elevation could help Alhassan’s cardio, which has been a problem for him in the past.
Alhassan’s opponent, Joaquin Buckley, has also made headlines recently regarding his fight camp, but not for good reason. Buckley has viral self-defense trainer Dale Brown in his corner for this fight. Brown is infamous on social media for showcasing self-defense tactics that don’t seem effective in real-life situations. It makes you wonder how seriously Buckley takes his training for this fight.
When it comes to this matchup, Alhassan is an explosive striker who has multiple knockouts, including a KO header in his last fight. Buckley doesn’t display a great striking defense and has been knocked out in two of his five UFC fights, with one of those knockouts coming from a head kick. A first-round knockout victory for Alhassan is realistic considering Alhassan’s power and Buckley’s questionable defense, which gives Alhassan a fantastic advantage. Alhassan scored four times over 120 DraftKings Fantasy Points (DKFP) and peaked at 150 DKFP, which is the type of advantage he carries in this fight. The move to Elevation could also extend Alhassan’s window of success if his cardio has improved his training with a strong team in Colorado.
DraftKings Sportsbook bet to consider: Abdul Razak Alhassan will win by KO/TKO/DQ (+250)
Stud to pay for: Jonathan Pearce ($9,300)
At -365 on the Moneyline, Pearce is the biggest favorite on this list due in part to a late opponent switch. Christian Rodriguez, Pearce’s opponent, took the fight on extremely short notice. Fighters who fight on short notice are usually at a great disadvantage due to a lack of preparation time, which can lead to stamina and timing issues. Rodriguez is also fairly inexperienced and his only UFC experience is on Dana White’s Contender Series.
Pearce has excellent rate stats for fantasy scoring, landing around seven significant strikes per minute and averaging a ridiculous seven takedowns per 15 minutes, the most on the slate. Pearce also has a larger frame. Pearce is five inches taller and Rodriguez has fought a weight class at bantamweight, so Pearce should also come in with the height advantage, which may help him in his pursuit of takedowns.
Pearce’s high punching and grappling volume has seen him score over 120 DraftKings Fantasy Points (DKFP) in each of his last two fights, and he carries a big fantasy advantage.
Main Event Preview: Jamahal Hill vs. Johnny Walker
- Moneyline: -255
- % Handle: 51%
- % Bets: 60%
- Moneyline: +205
- % Handle: 49%
- % Bets: 40%
Betting splits provided by DraftKings Sportsbook
Total combat significant strikes
- More than 49.5 (-105)
- Less than 49.5 (-120)
- KO/TKO/DQ: -400
- Decision: +300
- Submission: +800
- Draw: +5000
Hill and Walker are tall and long. Hill is 6’4 with a reach of 79 inches, while Walker is 6’6 with a massive reach of 82 inches. Walker’s 82-inch reach is one of the longest in the entire UFC and allows him to land strikes at distances opponents aren’t used to. Walker will be the longest opponent Hill has faced in the UFC.
None of these fighters are really going for takedowns. Hill hasn’t attempted a single takedown in six UFC bouts, while Walker hasn’t attempted a single takedown in any of his last seven UFC bouts. Due to the lack of offensive grappling, DraftKings Sportsbook has defined the fighting prop of Total fights knocked down at 0.5, with most getting odds of +400 and no outs getting odds of -550.
Hill makes up for a lack of grappling volume with a ton of punch volume. Hill lands around 7.5 significant punches per minute, second on the slate. Walker’s punch volume has been far less, landing around 3.5 significant punches per minute, but he makes up for it with power. All of Walker’s last four wins have been by KO/TKO.
Hill’s strike-to-absorb ratio is excellent at over 2:1. Walker also landed more strikes than he absorbed, although his ratio wasn’t quite as good.
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All opinions expressed are my own. I am an employee of DraftKings and cannot participate in public DFS or DKSB competitions. The content of this article are not a representation that a particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment to create queues.
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