Okay gang, it’s that time again. In this article we will break down our shows official Draft Kings picks, as well as touching on a few other fighters we love/hate for various reasons. As you may know, we have been on a bit of a hot streak lately, and we’re looking to keep that same energy going into tonight’s card. We have had a few cancellations, but none that have affected our lineup from Tuesday’s show. And after several days of thinking it through, I’ve decided to stay with our Tuesday picks, so LFG!
Starting with our biggest underdog, we are going with our lowest priced guy on the slate; who also happens to be in the highest profile fight of the night, Gilbert Burns. Coming in at $7200, we are choosing to stack Burns on this card with his opponent Kamaru Usman. I am picking Usman to win this fight, but I do see it being a 5 round fight where Usman’s floor will be closer to the ceiling of some other fighters tonight. So we are rolling the the Bigfoot sighting of Draft Kings picks; and stacking our main event guys.
Next up at $7500, Coconut Bombs, Maki Pitolo. Do you remember that really bad Jumanji movie with The Rock in it? That movie still hadn’t hit theaters yet the last time Pitolo’s opponent, Julian Marques won a fight. You can’t simply look at Pitolo’s win loss record and see the type of fighter he is. He’s improving, he’s technical and he’s dangerous. Julian Marques has been out for a very long time with a serious injury, his cardio was never good to begin with and I can’t imagine it’s better after years on the shelf. On top of that, Marques is very hittable and I just don’t trust all those factors together. For $7500, there’s a lot to like going into tonight for Maki Pitolo.
Next up, a third(!) underdog of the night. I know, I know. Playing 3 underdogs is risky, but like King Benny said in Sleepers, “Life is risk”. Maycee Barber is a talented young prospect, a finishing machine and a bad stylistic matchup for her opponent, Alexa Grasso. The tape will show you that Grasso is the superior technical striker, but you will also see that Grasso needs to have an opponent who is willing to box with her for that style to be effective. Maycee Barber is a pressure heavy striker who will come forward with heavy hands, push you against the cage and beat you up until you want out. I think she bullies Grasso around the cage, probably takes her to the ground at some or many points, and just rains hellfire on her whenever she gets the space. Give me the young prospect in the co-main event. The UFC clearly wants to showcase her and I’ll take the points that come with it.
Finally, a favorite. Kamaru Usman($9,000) is going to win this fight. He’s also an insanely high scorer on Draft Kings. In 8 of Usman’s last 9 fights, he’s cleared the 100 point mark on DK, often going much higher, and once even coming within arms length of 200 pts against RDA. I believe this fight will go all 5 rounds. I think it will be moderately competitive, with both men scoring enough points to be worth their prices. Unless you have the strongest possible lean on Burns, maybe you have some inside info; please don’t hurt yourself by leaving Usman out of your lineup.
Ricky Simon ($9100) has a dangerous opponent in front of him. Brian Kelleher has heavy hands and is nasty with submissions. But Brian Kelleher woke up this morning excited bc he knew he would get to do his favorite thing tonight…. Get taken down in an MMA fight. Ricky Simon will land takedown after takedown tonight and I don’t see Kelleher stopping that from happening. I think this is a fight you will be very nervous about until the first round ends and then you’ll just sit back and watch your score increase, round by round. I believe Ricky Simon will dominate this fight on the ground and score north of 100 points.
Last up, Rodolfo Viera($9300) This isn’t a hard pick. Viera has finished every fight of his career, he’s a scary high level black belt who calls himself the black belt hunter. Fluffy Hernandez typically likes to have the grappling advantage in his fights for his best path to victory, but he won’t have that in this fight. The risk in this fight is Viera’s stand up and potential cardio issues should he not get an early sub, but we are betting on that sub to happen. I think someone will be able to figure Viera out in the near future, but Fluffy Hernandez will not be the one. I’m playing Viera over Belal Muhammad with a better matchup bc I think Viera has a better chance for the finish. Go big or go home.
I typically like to play more mid range plays than this card. Going with 3 underdogs is a risky strategy, but for the matchups I see on this card, I like our underdogs more than some mid range favorites.
I wanted to find a way to put Gastellum in, but I think the upside of the three over him is worth more. But I’m sure I’ll put Gastellum in over Simon in certain lineups. Gutierrez at $8400 is another guy I want to play and in different lines up where I will be playing more mid range fighters, I’ll join Bob and Real Mike in backing him
My next highest favorite underdog that we’re not playing is Gillian Robertson. I don’t think she’ll win; but I recognize her very clear path to victory and that’s what Draft Kings underdogs are all about.
That’s it for this week. If you have any questions feel free to hit me up on Twitter @MikeyGilz and we can argue over this and many other things(Hackers is the best movie ever made, fight me)