UFC Fight Night Picks & Predictions: Our Best Bets for Rosa vs. Edwards (Saturday, Feb. 6)
Zhe Ji/Getty Images. Pictured: Karol Rosa.
Editors note: Cody Stamann and Askar Askar’s fight has been canceled. Askar was not medically cleared to compete.
We know everyone is about ready for football. But before the action at the Super Bowl kicks off Sunday, fight fans will be treated to a 13-fight UFC Fight Night event headlined by a heavyweight matchup between Alistair Overeem and Alexander Volkov.
But our MMA crew isn’t looking at the top of the ticket for value. Instead, they’ve found decision props with value further down on the card. So where should you be looking to place your bets? Check out their analysis and picks on those matches below.
Sean Zerillo: Karol Rosa vs. Joselyne Edwards
Betting Analyst, The Action Network
I mentioned Rosa in the section above. You should note that she validated her win over Procopio with a dominant victory over Vanessa Melo (120-45 on significant strikes, 30-26 on two scorecards) last July.
I immediately became a fan of Rosa, her aggressive nature, and her tree-trunk legs – she has denied all five takedown attempts in the UFC (five against Procopio, two against Melo), and it looks like you’ll need an ax to get her down.
Rosa throws a ton of volume (9.7 strikes landed per minute, 50% accuracy) – including a high volume of leg kicks – and it will be difficult for Edwards to maintain a similar output.
Like Rosa, I immediately became a fan of Edwards after her debut – showing an extremely aggressive style and some slick submission attempts on short notice.
I would give her a pass for potential late-round cardio concerns, but this just a three-week turnaround after her debut on Fight Island, and she’s entering this card as a late replacement for Nicco Montano.
Edwards faded in the third round of that debut, and a stronger fighter would have posed a stiffer test in the grappling department.
These are two of my favorite Bantamweight prospects, but Rosa is much more likely to win minutes in this fight.
I have Rosa’s decision line projected at -148, and I would bet that prop up to -130 at a three percent edge. At the time of writing, PointsBet has the best line, but be sure to check out our UFC odds page for updated lines on each fight.
Bets: Karol Rosa wins by Decision (+112)
Erich Richter: Cody Stamann vs. Askar Askar
Contributor at The Action Network
This is Askar’s UFC debut and he has been given no favors from the UFC with this matchup. Askar will be taking this fight on five-days notice adding to the difficulty of a normal UFC debut. Rarely do we see fighters make their debut against ranked opponents, but that is exactly what Askar will be asked to do.
Stamann is the No. 13-ranked bantamweight challenger although this fight will take place at featherweight. He is well known for his takedowns as he averages 3.03 per fifteen minutes per UFC Stats. This is where Stamann will be extremely heavy and sap Askar of his energy. AK-47 is taking this fight on a week’s notice, so we can’t realistically expect his cardio to be on Stamann’s level.
Offensively, Askar is well-known outside of the UFC. He has five knockouts on his resume and suffered his first loss last February. When scouting him we find that his defense has some holes both in the striking department and grappling. This is common for a young fighter who is looking to impose his will on their opponent.
He is excellent at taking people down with strong wrestling, but his takedown defense is not as highly regarded. Wrestlers typically do not do well off their back. In his most recent fight in the Legacy Fighting Alliance (LFA) he was taken down several times, but still picked up a victory over Kevin Wirth.
Frankly, it seems ridiculous that the UFC is pinning Askar against Stamann in his first UFC action. Stamann averages 4.14 significant strikes per minute and has a very solid striking defense. Askar has the potential to be a very solid UFC fighter. Asking him to win his UFC debut, against a ranked fighter, on five day’s notice is a lot.
There is not much of a temptation for me to bet Stamann to win inside the distance at +235. Stamann has finished anyone in the UFC. I expect The Spartan to grind out another victory as he pushes into a new weight class. I’ll back him to win by decision at FanDuel.
The Pick: Cody Stamann by decision (-135)