Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) women’s bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes looks to settle a score against top contender Valentina Shevchenko this Saturday evening (Sept. 9, 2017) when the UFC 215 pay-per-view (PPV) hits Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
Original headliners Demetrious Johnson and Ray Borg are no longer competing (details here).
An intriguing welterweight match up pits former lightweight champ Rafael Dos Anjos against the towering Neil Magny, while Ilir Latifi puts Tyson Pedro’s prospect status to the test. In addition, Jeremy Stephens welcomes Gilbert Melendez to the featherweight division.
It’s been a while since the last major PPV event, so you’ve hopefully scrounged up enough coin to buy this one. If you haven’t, well, we’ve got you covered.
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The scorecards for Rustam Khabilov vs. Des Green were a little on the bonkers side, but I guess all’s well that ends well. On to this week’s lineup.
Sara McMann (-260) vs. Kelten Vieira (+220)
Ashlee Evans-Smith (-235) vs. Sarah Moras (+195)
Gavin Tucker (-240) vs. Rick Glenn (+200)
Alex White (-170) vs. Mitch Clarke (+150)
Arjan Bhullar (-185) vs. Luis Henrique (+160)
Adriano Martins (-400) vs. Kajan Johnson (+325)
Thoughts: Sara McMann’s certainly worth a look. The rest? Less so.
McMann has really come into her own in recent fights, making huge strides in her striking, submissions, and overall transition game. She’s also got a quality chin and solid cardio, precluding a surprise knockout or war of attrition from Vieira. A safe, comfortable investment.
If you want to squeeze a bit more return from her, maybe try Gavin Tucker. He’s got a clear footwork and speed advantage over Glenn, who won his last fight by the skin of his teeth.
Also, fun fact: Adriano Martins actually opened at -260. It was -380 within six minutes.
Valentina Shevchenko (-120) vs. Amanda Nunes (EVEN)
Rafael Dos Anjos (-190) vs. Neil Magny (+165)
Henry Cejudo (-340) vs. Wilson Reis (+280)
Ilir Latifi (-130) vs. Tyson Pedro (-110)
Jeremy Stephens (-115) vs. Gilbert Melendez (-105)
Thoughts: Dos Anjos vs. Magny is a pick-em. In such cases, the moderate underdog is a tempting bargain.
Magny will have six inches of height and a staggering ten inches of reach on Dos Anjos, who struggled to physically impose himself on Tarec Saffiedine the way he did against lightweights. Plus, Magny’s got an endless gas tank and sufficient wrestling to shut down Kelvin Gastelum for three rounds. Put a bit on the big boy.
Besides that, go big on Valentina Shevchenko. Nunes has improved her cardio, but her fight IQ has a bad habit of disintegrating once she starts to wilt. Shevchenko proved she has the chin to withstand Nunes’ bombs and the energy required to keep her down is more than Nunes can exert for five full rounds.
Best bets for UFC 215:
Parlay-Sara McMann and Gavin Tucker: $70 to make $67.30
Single bet-Neil Magny: $40 to make $66
Single bet-Valentina Shevchenko: $60 to make $50
Initial Investment For 2017: $200 (+$200 infusion)
Current Total: $212.86
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 215 fight card on fight night (click here), starting with the Fight Pass "Prelims" matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard balance on FOX Sports 1 at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET.
For much more on this weekend’s UFC 215 extravaganza click here.