If you pretend that the preliminary card doesn’t exist, UFC Vegas 27 looks like a really outstanding set of fights. There isn’t a whole lot to get excited about with the first six matches scheduled for Saturday night, but the last six fights all look quite good.
It makes sense that a non-pay-per-view event would have some letdowns scheduled for the card, but the strength of the main card is good enough to make this one some appointment viewing on Saturday May 22. It will be tough with NBA and NHL Playoffs, not to mention the PGA Championship and MLB, but if you get the chance to tune in, you should be entertained.
For this weekend’s fight card, we’ll take a look at the odds from BetMGM Sportsbook, where you can sign up right now and get up to a $600 Deposit Bonus. It is a great time on the sports calendar with so much going on and shopping around for the best odds is important. More often than not, you will them at BetMGM Sportsbook.
UFC Betting Odds & Picks – Font (-120) vs. Garbrandt (+100)
The main event of UFC Vegas 27 at the UFC Apex is the bantamweight battle between Rob Font and Cody Garbrandt. Neither Font nor Garbrandt are high-volume fighters in terms of getting in the Octagon. This will be Font’s third fight since the calendar flipped to 2019. He did fight three times in 2018, but took nearly a year-long hiatus between his win over Sergio Pettis and his victory over Ricky Simon.
Font is 18-4 in his career with three wins in a row and an 8-3 record in UFC. The 33-year-old hasn’t been in the spotlight the way that Garbrandt has. The slight underdog in this fight won the title in 2016 over Dominick Cruz and then lost it to TJ Dillashaw. He lost the rematch as well and then also lost to Pedro Munhoz, a fighter that also has a win over Font.
The win over Raphael Assuncao was a big one for Garbrandt, who had suffered all three career losses in the span of 18 months. That win was just shy of a year ago. Font last fought in December.
The total for the five-round fight is 2.5 with the under juiced at -120. Thirteen of 15 for Garbrandt have ended in a stoppage and seven of his last eight went under 2.5. Three of Font’s last four have gone to a decision, but in the smaller UFC Apex Octagon, there is nowhere to hide.
That would be the pick here in what is otherwise a toss-up fight.
Pick: Under 2.5
UFC Vegas 27 Predictions – Xiaonan (-135) vs. Esparza (+110)
This is a very good fight in the women’s strawweight division. We’ve been looking for some good women’s fights lately. The title matches are simply too top-heavy. There isn’t enough parity in most of these divisions.
The fighter with more to gain here is Yan Xiaonan. This would be her biggest win to date, even if we don’t see as much of Carla Esparza in prominent fights as we used to. After all, her last title fight was March 14, 2015 and she is only 7-3 since then.
Esparza has fought much better competition, even going back to her Invicta days. Her last four opponents in Marina Rodriguez, Michelle Waterson, Alexa Grasso, and Virna Jandiroba could all be better than the best that Yan has faced, which is likely Claudia Gadelha.
This will be a very technical fight. Esparza is excellent on the ground and Yan is one of the best and most accurate strikers in the division. Yan’s height advantage may end up the difference, but Esparza is more experienced, especially against better fighters. It’s a great fight and one that is tough to call. It does look like Yan Xiaonan is getting the benefit of the doubt from the smarter MMA handicappers out there with a line move in her favor.
Pick: Yan Xiaonan
UFC Vegas 27 Best Bets
Let’s jump around the card a bit and find some best bets.
Felicia Spencer is a little chalky here against Norma Dumont at -165, but this could very well be the best bet of the night. Spencer has two losses to her name – Amanda Nunes and Cris Cyborg. Those are two of the best we’ve ever seen in the sport. The beating that Spencer took at the hands of Nunes is keeping this price lower than it should be. Dumont is only 1-1 in UFC and she lost badly by first-round KO to Megan Anderson, who is a lot closer to Spencer than Ashlee Evans-Smith, Dumont’s lone UFC victory.
The fight between Edmen Shahbazyan and Jack Hermansson looks like a really good one as well. It may be surprising to see Hermansson such a big favorite at -160 against a guy with only one loss to his name, but it’s what happened in that loss that stands out.
Shahbazyan struggled badly with takedown defense against Derek Brunson. Brunson doubled him up in strikes. It was a rude awakening for Shahbazyan. Hermansson couldn’t get his last fight against Marvin Vettori to the ground. He should have better success here.