UFC 265 Odds, Pick & Prediction for Vince Morales vs. Drako Rodriguez: How to Bet Prelim Bantamweight Bout (Saturday, Aug. 7)

UFC 265 Odds, Pick & Prediction for Vince Morales vs. Drako Rodriguez: How to Bet Prelim Bantamweight Bout (Saturday, Aug. 7) article feature image
Credit:

Cooper Neill/Zuffa LLC. Pictured: Nelson Morales (left).

  • Vince Morales and Drako Rodriguez face off on the UFC 265 prelims on Saturday night.
  • Morales returns to the octagon after a 15-month layoff, while Rodriguez looks to bounce back from a loss in his UFC debut back in February.
  • Sean Zerillo breaks down this bantamweight clash and whether he sees any value in the matchup.

Vince Morales vs. Drako Rodriguez Odds

Morales Odds
+106
Rodriguez Odds
-134
Over/Under
2.5 (-157 / +122)
Venue
Toyota Center
Time
9 p.m. ET
Channel
ESPN
Odds as of Friday night and via PointsBet.

Drako Rodriguez looks to get his first official UFC win in the co-main event of the UFC 265 prelims on Saturday night against Vince Morales.

The 25-year-old Rodriguez impressed with a submission win on Dana White’s Contender Series in September 2020, but he was knocked out in his debut for the promotion back in February by Aiemann Zahabi. Prior to UFC, he finished his opponent in five of six wins in King of the Cage.

Morales, meanwhile, hasn’t fought since May 2020 and could really use a win. He has lost three of his first four UFC fights after falling on the Contender Series back in July 2018. His only win in UFC ironically came against Zahabi back in May 2019.

Let’s break down this intriguing matchup at 135 pounds.

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Tale of the Tape

Morales Rodriguez
Record 9-5 7-2
Avg. Fight Time 12:16 2:44
Height 5’7″ 5’8″
Weight (pounds) 136 lbs. 136 lbs.
Reach (inches) 70″ 69″
Stance Orthodox Orthodox
Date of birth 11/12/90 6/16/96
Sig Strikes Per Min 4.22 2.57
SS Accuracy 39% 35%
SS Absorbed Per Min 4.16 2.57
SS Defense 53% 26%
Take Down Avg 0.00 2.75
TD Acc 0% 100%
TD Def 55% 0%
Submission Avg 0.0 2.8

There’s always at least one fight on every card where I don’t have a good read on the matchup. Unfortunately, if you were looking for a play on this fight, I would just be grasping at air.

Rodriguez, who earned a contract last September on Contender Series, is looking to bounce back after a knockout loss in his UFC debut in February.

Morales is a four-fight UFC veteran who took time off to recover from an Achilles tear following his loss to Chris Gutierrez last May. Fighters who start out 1-3 in the UFC typically don’t keep their roster spot, so perhaps the UFC sees something in Morales.

He beat Zahabai, the man who knocked out Rodriguez — but MMA math isn’t that simple.

I’m not overly impressed with Rodriguez, despite the hype. He’s the faster man of these two and has a solid kicking game, But he’s also low-output and has mostly submitted opponents from the bottom on the regional scene.

Morales has held his own with a striker like Song Yadong (lost 79-74 on significant strikes), but his takedown defense (55%) has shown some holes and Rodriguez has a path to victory on the mat.

Morales vs. Rodriguez Pick

I don’t project betting value on this fight from any perspective, though I would lean to Morales as the side. His line has come down from odds of +120 within the past week.

The Pick: Pass

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