UFC Fight Night Best Bets: Picks & Predictions for Moises vs. Hernandez, Krylov vs. Ankalaev (Feb. 27)
Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images. Pictured: Thiago Moises.
- While COVID-19 has already impacted one fight on Saturday's card, our MMA analysts still see value in two matchups tonight.
- Check out their picks anad analysis for two matchups exciting matchups below: Thiago Moises vs. Alexander Hernandez and Nikita Krylov vs. Magomed Ankalaev.
Editors’s note: Angela Hill vs. Ashley Yoder has been postponed due to a positive COVID-19 test.
The UFC is closing out February with an action-packed Fight Night card Saturday night headlined by hard-hitting heavyweights Jairzinho Rozenstruik and Ciryl Gane.
With nine other exciting bouts on the slate, there is plenty of value to be found. So where should you be looking to place your bets? Our crew has pinpointed three fights and picks on Saturday’s card that present betting value.
You can find their analysis and picks on those matches below.
Erich Richter: Thiago Moises vs. Alexander Hernandez
Contributor at The Action Network
Last weekend’s UFC Fight Night was the card of the underdog and I do not expect that to change this weekend.
Moises’ most recent win came as a +250 underdog against decision machine Bobby Green and he seems to be turning a corner. He’s coming off of the sharpest performance of his career and has never been knocked out in 18 fights.
However, the same cannot be said about Hernandez. He defeated Chris Gruetzemacher in his last fight, but that was more of a get-right matchup for Hernandez. (Gruetzemacher had not fought in two years after ACL surgery and was 1-2 in his two fights prior.)
Hernandez looks the part as a UFC fighter — similar to Sage Northcutt — but the underlying stats do not project a championship future.
Hernandez absorbs more shots than he lands (4.0 to 2.71) and has been knocked out in twice of his past four fights. This appears to be a fight between one man trending upwards and another trending downwards.
Perhaps the camp change to Factory X will do wonders for Hernandez, but I tend to fade fighters who are switching camps and in the midst of adversity. This fight should be closer to a pick em’ in my estimation.
Moises is +188 (34.72% implied) at FanDuel and I would even bet that down to +150 (40% implied). I also see solid value on Moises by decision at +420 (19.23% implied), but I wouldn’t bet this lower than +390 as finishes are much more common in the smaller octagon at the UFC Apex.
The Pick: Thiago Moises ML (+188) | Moises by decision (+420)
Sean Zerillo: Angela Hill vs. Ashley Yoder
Betting Analyst, The Action Network
This is a rematch from a 2017 bout that Hill won by unanimous decision, 30-27, on all three scorecards. All 15 media members scored the bout for Hill, though five of the 15 scored the bout 29-28 instead of 30-27.
Yoder needs to secure takedowns and maintain top control to win this rematch. The first time around, she did secure three of her six attempts, but only maintained 3:20 of control time (compared to 2:50 for Hill) while losing the striking battle 65-54 (47-26 in significant strikes).
The longer this fight stays on the feet, the more significant of a favorite Hill should become — Yoder cannot keep up with her output (5.7 to 2.81 strikes landed per minute; +0.54 to -0.52 in strike differential), and the time between their last fight would seemingly help Hill’s defense (77% takedown defense) more than Yoder’s offense (1.25 takedowns landed per 15 minutes, 38% accuracy).
At a substantial moneyline figure, Hill is a clear pass. Too many of her fights end in controversial decisions — 7-7 on the scorecards, including four split decisions. But I have Hill’s decision prop projected at -211 (implied 67.9%), and I’m happy to bet that prop up to -185.
A finish in this bout does seem unlikely, but I’m going to avoid double-dipping. I will bypass the distance prop (projected -521, listed -345) in the small cage at a substantial figure and solely rely upon Hill to get our decision ticket home.
The Pick: Angela Hill wins by Decision (-175)
Billy Ward: Nikita Krylov vs. Magomed Ankalaev
Contributor at The Action Network
Ankalaev is a heavy favorite in this one (-360 FanDuel) coming in with a 14-1 record and his sole loss by submission in 2018. Krylov has a less impressive 27-7 record, but has been knocked out just once in 2013.
Krylov sports a 2.5-inch reach advantage, and is the better grappler, racking up 15 submission wins over the course of his career. He won’t force the takedown (he attempts a below average 0.91 takedowns per round), but has a chance to get it there if he doesn’t like how things are going on the feet.
Krylov also throws with much more volume, about eight extra strikes per round. Both guys have the power to end this one in a hurry, but if Krylov can use his length to avoid big shots from Ankalaev, or turn this into a grappling match, he should be able to see his hand raised by the end of the night.
Ankalaev has the better resume, but Krylov has a lot of paths to victory for a guy who is currently listed as a +290 dog. I like the value on Krylov to win outright, and at longer odds, Krylov to win submission.
The Pick: Nikita Krylov ML (+290 down to +250) | Krylov by Submission (+1100)