After an exciting UFC 249 card over the weekend, the UFC is back again on Wednesday, and DraftKings is offering multiple ways for users to get in on the action, including a free-to-play pool on DraftKings Sportsbook. To participate in the free pool, choose winners for each main event fight and compete for $1,000 in prizes. Head here to participate: Free to Play: UFC Fight Night 5/13 — $1k Guaranteed.
In addition, DraftKings users can enter for their chance to win big prizes in Wednesday’s fantasy MMA Mid-Week Melee contest, which pays out a guaranteed $400,000, including $100,000 to first place. The fantasy MMA action gets underway at 6:00 p.m. ET on Wednesday. Set your lineups here: MMA $400K Mid-Week Melee [$100K to 1st].
Below, Charlie Mayer shares his thoughts on the eight questions in the UFC pool and breaks down the action on the main card, which includes five matchups. The pool locks at 8:00 p.m. ET.
Anthony Smith vs. Glover TeixeiraIn the main event, we have #4 ranked Anthony ‘Lionheart’ Smith against a savvy veteran of the light heavyweight division, #8 ranked Glover Teixeira. This fight is important for determining who will remain in the picture for title contention at this point in both fighter’s careers. Smith (33-14) is coming off a monumental win against former champion contender Alexander Gustafsson, and since moving up to light heavyweight, Smith has compiled a very impressive 4-1 record. Smith’s only loss at the new weight class came against champion Jon Jones. Teixeira (30-7) is a black belt in Brazlilian jiu-jitsu and combines his grappling with high-level technical boxing ability. He also unleashes devastating ground-and-pound once he secures mount. Glover is experiencing a great resurgence in his career and has won his last three in a row. Smith is currently lined as the -175 favorite in this fight, and as the younger fighter, he will look to add another big name to his record which includes finishing Rashad Evans, Mauricio Rua, and Alexander Gustaffson.
Anthony Smith vs. Glover Teixeira – Winning MethodSmith has shown the ability to overcome early adversity, and having a five-round fight will be to his advantage here if this fight goes into the late rounds. Smith has had 55% of his wins coming by KO/TKO, and Glover has had 57% of his wins ending in KO/TKO which indicates that a knockout is a likely outcome. Teixeira is an accomplished Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt, but Smith will be able to hold his own in grappling exchanges as he has only been submitted early in his career. Look for Teixeira to close the distance and implement his boxing style and try to land a heavy upper-cut or hook combination. If Smith is able to use his long length and create openings, look for him to push forward hunting for a KO of his own.
Ben Rothwell vs. Ovince Saint PreuxBoth these fighters have unorthodox fighting styles, and this match will likely be a chess match between the two veterans, which means it could have depth into the later rounds. Rothwell likes to reach out and extend his hands while moving forward, baiting his opponent to engage with him. On the other side, Saint Preux is able to wait patiently to time his counter strikes and use his athleticism to strike quickly from his southpaw stance. This will be Saint Preux’s first fight at heavyweight, and while he is the much faster fighter, we do not yet know how these skills will translate to the heavier weight class. Rothwell plods forward and likes to apply a steady pace of forward pressure. Rothwell will also have the power advantage in this match. If Ovince is able to defeat Rothwell, he will make an immediate splash in the HW division.
Ben Rothwell vs. Ovince Saint Preux- Winning MethodRothwell will look to keep the fight standing, as he averages only 0.66 takedowns landed per 15 minutes. If Rothwell is able to connect hard, he has a good chance to KO Saint Preux. OSP has successfully finished four opponents by the Von Flue Choke, a shoulder choke applied from the top position that is a rare sight in the UFC. If Saint Preux is able to avoid the power punches from Rothwell, he is live to get a submission victory or take the fight to a decision win.
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Alexander Hernandez vs. Drew DoberAlexander Hernandez (11-2) against Drew Dober (22-9) will be a competitive affair with both fighters looking to prove something and improve their ranking in the division. This fight is lined closely, and Dober is listed at a -125 favorite on DraftKings Sportsbook. Dober is fighting out of Elevation Fight Team and has looked excellent in his recent victories, showing consistent improvement in all facets. His confidence is likely to be very high after two first round KO’s. Dober has been fighting in the UFC since 2013, while Hernandez recently made his debut in 2018.
Hernandez experienced his first setback against perennial top-10 fighter, Donald Cerrone, in only his 3rd UFC outing. Most recently, Hernandez squeaked out a close decision victory against the Brazilian native and UFC veteran Francisco Trinaldo. While Dober is fully coming into his own through his UFC journey, Hernandez has been on a fast track and looks to continue with a victory here. Experience will play a major factor for Dober, and going into this he has a major edge in this department.
Alexander Hernandez vs. Drew Dober – Winning MethodBoth fighters are comfortable pushing a fast pace and have the stamina to last the duration of three rounds, which means this fight is quite likely to go the distance. As Dober is coming off two first-round KO finishes, many will be looking for him to add a third to complete a hat-trick in this match. Hernandez’s KO against Beneil Dariush in his UFC debut shows he has the ability to finish this fight by KO as well.
Ricky Simon vs. Ray BorgIn this bantamweight matchup, Ricky Simon faces Ray ‘The Tazmexican Devil’ Borg and will look to get back on track as a hot prospect in the division. Simon has recently lost to Urijah Faber and Rob Font, and a win against Borg is much needed for him. At his natural weight class, Simon should have a power advantage, as Borg is fighting up a weight class. Borg has great takedown ability when pressuring and made Daily Fantasy players very happy by scoring 10 Takedowns in his last fight against Rogerio Bontorin. Simon will have to avoid getting taken down here if he hopes to win. Luckily, Simon is competent against takedowns and has a TD Defense of 71% in previous UFC fights. Borg has fought the best of the Flyweight division including former champion Demetrius Johnson, and despite fighting up in weight, he will be very comfortable in this spot to get the upset.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Karl Roberson fell ill after his weight cut and his fight against Marvin Vettori tonight at UFC Fight Night: Smith vs. Teixeira is off, per ESPN’s Ariel Helwani.
Karl Roberson vs. Marvin Vettori This match features two promising middleweight fighters in Karl Roberson (9-2) and Mavin Vettori (14-4). Vettori, the 26 years old Italian, uses his bulky frame to overpower his opponents. He was even able to land two takedowns against the current champion, Israel Adesanya, and will look to use wrestling to get the fight on the ground in this match. Karl Roberson first emerged onto the UFC scene with a victory from the 1st season of Dana White’s Contender’s Series debut and has since impressed in the octagon including two Submission Rear Naked Choke victories. Roberson has strong leg kicks and has previous kickboxing experience that Vettori will need to withstand in order to push the pace. Both fighters are durable and this fight could go the full distance. They are both still learning and rounding out their MMA game, so this should be an exciting chance to see the growth of these fighters. Both have a 4-2 record in the UFC, and this match will be sure to showcase a variety of weapons from each fighter.
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