UFC Fight Night 75 takes place in Tokyo, Japan. It features an uninspiring main even between heavyweights Josh Barnett and Roy Nelson but there are still some strong fantasy plays on the card. Below are my studs and value plays for UFC Fight Night 75 to help fill out your DraftKings lineups:
Best Plays on the Card
Nick Hein ($10,900) vs. Yusuke Kasuya
Hein is 2-1 in the UFC with all three fights going to decision but on Saturday he’ll have a big advantage over Japanese prospect Kasuya.
Kasuya is making his UFC debut and he’ll have the crowd behind him. However, Kasuya has only fought once since 2013 and he’s still developing as a fighter. Hein has an advantage in every area heading into this fight.
Hein is a good defensive fighter, so Kasuya’s striking shouldn’t be a problem for him. Hein attempts over seven significant strikes per minute. He’s going to be a tough matchup for the less inexperienced Kasuya because of his pressure.
Kasuya best chance to win is by submission. Kasuya has won eight of his 10 fights by submission but to do that he first has to get Hein to the ground. In three UFC fights, Hein has yet to be taken down.
Hein should win this fight pretty easily. He doesn’t have a lot of power, so it’s hard to guarantee a finish, but Hein’s experience, defense and pressure will be too much for Kasuya.
Diego Brandao ($10,600) vs. Katsunori Kikuno
Brandao has lost two of his last three fights but those losses came against top quality opponents Connor McGregor and Dustin Poirier. Take those losses out and Brandao is 8-1 in his last nine fights.
Kikuno is 2-2 in the UFC. His two losses have both been by first-round knockout. In his last fight, Kikuno lasted 1:31 before getting knocked out by Kevin Souza.
Both fighters have strong takedown defenses, so expect this fight to stay standing. Brandao is a more accurate striker but this should be a pretty entertaining matchup.
Only seven of Brandao’s 29 career fights have gone to decision and thee of Kikuno’s four UFC fights have ended in finishes. Brandao has faced the better completion and he’s the more complete fighter. I like him to get the victory over Kikuno in Japan.
Kajan Johnson ($10,700) vs. Naoyuki Kotani
Kotani is 0-4 since returning to the UFC and it’ a bad 0-4. Kotani has been finished in his last three fights and likely needs a win Saturday to stay in the organization. It’s going to be an uphill battle.
Kotani provides very little as a striker. He attempts just over three significant strikes and lands less than one per minute. His accuracy rate is a measly 27.8 percent. So Kotani doesn’t throw many strikes and when he does he’s not very accurate. What Kotani does do well is submit people. He’s won 76 percent of his fights by submission.
Johnson striking isn’t anything to write home about either but he’s a strong grappler. Johnson averages 11 takedown attempts and Kotani has poor takedown defense. Johnson also has 11 submission wins in 33 career fights.
Johnson has an advantage in striking and grappling. He’s not elite in any one area but Johnson has enough ability to dispose of Kotani.
Best Value Plays for the Price
Chico Camus ($8,400) vs. Kyoji Horiguchi
This is probably my least favorite card of the entire year, so I don’t like many plays on it. One underdog that’s worth using with higher salaried fighters and could spring an upset is Camus.
Horiguchi is coming off a loss to fly weight champion Demetrious Johnson but there’s no shame in losing to the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world.
Camus is a tough opponent and he does have an advantage in this fight. Camus is a good wrestler and Horiguchi has a takedown defense of just 38 percent. If Camus can get in close, he has a chance to control this fight with his grappling.
The problem with that strategy is Horiguchi is excellent at keeping the range in a fight and counter striking. Even though Horiguchi has a poor takedown defense, it’s still difficult for opponents to dominate him on the ground because Horiguchi is so good on his feet.
I see this being a striking contest with Camus trying to pressure Horiguchi. If Camus can close the distance and take down Horiguchi he has a good chance of winning the fight.
Horiguchi has nine knockout wins but Camus has only been knocked out once in 21 career fights. Camus is also a bigger flyweight. I see him giving Horiguchi trouble and it being a very close fight.
At a salary of $8,400, Camus is the one big underdog on this card I feel is worth rostering with high-priced fighters.