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UFC 279 Fight Preview: UFC DFS Picks for DraftKings & FanDuel MMA Lineups | Diaz vs. Ferguson | ( Saturday, September 10)




On Saturday night, the UFC will be live from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas for UFC 279. This card will feature some of the best striking we have seen all year, starting with the main event featuring an existing welterweight bout of Nate Diaz  vs Tony Ferguson  . Then, on to the co-main event with what should be an electrifying catchweight bout of Khamzat Chimaev vs. Kevin Holland. Below are some MMA DFS picks and analyses with the help of Stokastic’s projections. Let’s see what’s on tap for UFC 279.

MMA DFS Picks: UFC 279 Diaz vs. Ferguson

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Irene Aidana $8,800 vs. Macy Chiasson $7,400

Irene Aidana

  • Age: 34
  • Height: 5’9″
  • Weight: 135 lbs.
  • Reach: 68.5 ins.
  • Record: 13-6-0
  • Striking Accuracy: 43%
  • Betting Odds: -186

Aidana is one of the best knockout artists in any of the women’s divisions. Her power, striking, physicality and accurate left hook can put her opponent’s lights out. She will use the sprawl and brawl approach and is extremely aggressive with her striking, always wanting to make the fight ugly. Her loss to Holly Holm completely shattered her hopes for a title shot and drained her momentum. Aidana rebounded well last time out, with an impressive first-round knockout over Yana Kunitskaya. She has seven wins via knockouts, three via submission and three via decision. I expect Aidana will come aggressively, looking to make a statement by giving Macy Chiasson her first knockout loss.

 Macy Chiasson

  • Age: 31
  • Height: 5’11”
  • Weight: 135 lbs.
  • Reach: 72 ins.
  • Record: 9-2-0
  • Striking Accuracy: 60%
  • Betting Odds: +144

Chiasson is coming off a unanimous decision win over Norma Dumont in May, in which she edged out an extremely close split decision. She will step into the cage with a nasty mentality of harming her opponent while making the fight an all-out brawl. She will have a sizable reach advantage and will be looking to engage in clinches in hopes of avoiding Aidana’s nasty stiff jab and accurate boxing. I expect Chiasson will come out fast looking to clinch and land nasty uppercuts from clinch position.

The pick on DraftKings and FanDuel is Aidana. I expect Aidana’s sharp boxing, stiff jab and huge power will be too much for Chiasson to withstand. Stokastic’s MMA DFS projections have Aidana with 63% win odds.

UFC DFS Pick: Irene Aidana via Second Round KO/TKO

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Khamzat Chimaev $9,600 vs. Kevin Holland $8,700

Khamzat Chimaev

  • Age: 28
  • Height: 6’2″
  • Weight: 170 lbs.
  • Reach: 75 ins.
  • Record: 11-0-0
  • Striking Accuracy: 69%
  • Betting Odds: -520

Chimaev has moved up the welterweight ranking extremely fast and is currently ranked No. 3, after defeating Gilbert Burns via unanimous decision in one of the most exciting fights of the year. Since making his UFC debut in 2020, Chimaev is riding a five-fight winning streak, with two wins via knockout, two via submission and one via decision. He has unbelievable strength and is a superior wrestler with heavy hands and devastating ground-and-pound while showing tremendous pedigree as a welterweight and middleweight. Chimaev has won the Performance of the Night bonus in each of his fights in the UFC, so, I expect he will again win the Performance of the Night bonus in this matchup against Holland.

Kevin Holland

  • Age: 29
  • Height: 6’3″
  • Weight: 170 lbs.
  • Reach: 81 ins.
  • Record: 23-7-0
  • Striking Accuracy: 68%
  • Betting Odds: +350

Holland will be looking to continue his winning ways at welterweight. Since moving down from middleweight, he has finished Alex Oliveira via knockout and Tim Means via submission. Holland is long, athletically gifted and has huge power on his feet. His one weakness has been his inability to defend takedowns, however, he has sought out training from some of the best wrestlers in the world. This has helped Holland keep the fight standing, where it is most dangerous to land huge power shots. I expect Holland to keep pressing forward, and use his size, sharp striking and heavy pressure to disrupt Chimaev rhythm.

The pick on DraftKings and FanDuel is Chimaev and I expect his volume, power, striking and durability will seal the victory. Stokastic projects have Chimaev as the top projected fighter on the slate with 56% win odds and 80.71 projected points on DraftKings. The Top Fighters Tool is also high, giving him a 42% chance of being in the top six on this card.

UFC DFS Pick: Khamzat Chimaev via Second Round KO/TKO

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Li Jingliang $9,000 vs. Daniel Rodriguez $7,500

Li Jingliang

  • Age: 34
  • Height: 6’0″
  • Weight: 170 lbs.
  • Reach: 71.5 ins.
  • Record: 19-7-0
  • Striking Accuracy: 46%
  • Betting Odds: +128

Jingliang is fresh off a second-round knockout win over Muslim Salkhov in July. Prior to this fight, he lost a lopsided fight against Khamzat Chimaev, losing via submission in the first round. Jingliang comes from a background in Sanda, which is a fighting system originally developed by the Chinese military based upon the study and practices of traditional Kung Fu and modern combat fighting techniques. It combines boxing and full-contact kickboxing. He will come forward throwing heavy overhand rights with big power that can put his opponent’s lights out in a hurry. I expect Jingliang will crack Daniel Rodriguez coming in early, with his powerful overhand right.

Daniel Rodriguez

  • Age: 35
  • Height: 6’1″
  • Weight: 171 lbs.
  • Reach: 74 ins.
  • Record: 16-2 -0
  • Striking Accuracy: 52%
  • Betting Odds: -154

Rodriguez is a southpaw that likes to fight from behind a nasty jab and will throw a dangerous straight left. His footwork is on point and he has excellent boxing technique, although when backing up, he can be slow to react to strikes and can get caught. Prior to his injury, he was on a three-fight winning streak, winning two via decisions and one via knockout. I expect Rodriguez to use his boxing, speed and footwork to make this fight interesting,  but Jingliang’s speed, overhand right, and elite cardio will be too much in the end.

The pick on DraftKings and FanDuel is Jingliang. I expect Jingliang’s volume, speed, overhand right and elite cardio will be too technical for Rodriguez. Stokastic projections have Jingliang with 45% win odds.

UFC DFS Pick: Li Jingliang via Second Round KO/TKO

Nate Diaz $6,600 vs. Tony Ferguson $7,200

Nate Diaz

  • Age: 37
  • Height: 6’0″
  • Weight: 170 lbs.
  • Reach: 76 ins.
  • Record: 21-13-0
  • Striking Accuracy: 57%
  • Betting Odds: +102

Diaz is a legend of the sport and could be making his walk to the octagon for what could be the last time. He made UFC history when he shocked the world by defeating Conor McGregor via submission in March of 2016. Then in their rematch five months later, Diaz pushed McGregor to the brink for all five rounds, however, McGregor won a close decision. Diaz is currently riding a two-fight losing streak, with a knockout loss to Jorge Masvidal and a decision loss to Leon Edwards. Prior to these losses, he had an impressive showing by defeating Anthony Pettis via decision at UFC 241 in 2019. I expect Diaz to use persistent pressure, volume boxing and elite cardio to wear on Ferguson.

Tony Ferguson

  • Age: 38
  • Height: 5’11”
  • Weight: 170 lbs.
  • Reach: 76.5 ins.
  • Record: 26-7-0
  • Striking Accuracy: 48%
  • Betting Odds: -1309

Ferguson was an elite fighter and quite frankly, one of the best welterweights to step inside the octagon. However, age and damage have caught up with him. He is currently riding a four-fight losing streak and has been knocked out in two of those four fights. In his most recent fight, Ferguson took a lot of damage early in hopes of finding success in the later rounds, however, that strategy proved to be crippling when Michael Chandler landed a devasting up-kick to the chin that put Ferguson’s lights out. I expect Ferguson will come out with his forward pressure pace and try too wear of Diaz early.

The pick on DraftKings and FanDuel is Diaz. I expect his volume, power, striking and durability will seal the victory. Stokastic projects have Diaz  with 45% win odds with a 43% chance for a knockout.

UFC DFS Pick: Nate Diaz  via Third Round KO/TKO

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