On Saturday, the UFC will be live from Madison Square Garden in New York City. For UFC 281, which is stacked from top to bottom starting with the main event, a middleweight title bout featuring Israel Adesanya vs. Alex Pereira. Then, on to the co-headliner a women’s strawweight title bout Carla Esparza vs. Zhang Weili. Below are some MMA DFS picks and analysis with the help of Stokastic’s UFC expert projections. Let’s see what’s on tap for UFC 281 and find some of the best UFC DFS picks for DraftKings and FanDuel lineups.
UFC 281 Picks: Adesanya vs. Pereira DFS Plays
Top-End Pick: Zhang Weili | DraftKings: $9,400 , FanDuel: $23
Zhang Weili is an absolute beast in recent training videos that were released. Her work ethic, athleticism, lack of ego, and willingness to be better than her opponents is why she should steamroll Carla Esparza in this matchup. Weili damage and output is insane if Weili can keep this fight on the feet, then Esparza is in store for a long and brutal night inside the octogen. Expect Esparza to try and drag Weili to the mat early but with Weili’s recent improvements in the cage she should hold her on. The Top Fighters Tool has her projected as the top fighter on this card with 76.4% win odds with 51% chance of being the top six fighter on this card.
Mid-Priced Pick: Carlos Ulberg | DraftKings: $8,400, FanDuel: $17
Ulberg has put his poor debut behind him by going on an impressive winning streak. Beating Fabio Cherant via unanimous decision at UFC 271 and then knocking out Tafon Nchukwi in June. Ulberg will be looking to continue his winning ways when he steps inside the cage against Nicolae Negumereanu at UFC 281. He comes from a kickboxing background and stands with confidence inside the octagon, using powerful striking, speed, nasty kicks, and stiff jab to wear on his opponents. According to Stokastic’s give him 52.2% win odds with a 33.5% chance for a knockout.
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Value Pick: Silvana Gomez Juarez | DraftKings: $8,000, FanDuel: $15
Juarez will be looking forward to pick up her second win in a row. Grappling issues was the reason Juarez dropped her first two UFC appearances, resulting in submission defeats at the hands of Lupita Godinez and Vanessa Demopoulos. She bounced back with an impressive knockout over armbar specialist Na Liang in June. Expect Karolina Kowalkiewicz to engage and bring heavy pressure in hopes of getting Juarez to the mat if this happens expect Juarez to catch her with a night ending shot. Stokastic’s give her 49.2%win odds with a 28.3% chance for a knockout.
Value Pick: Ottman Azaitar | DraftKings: $7,700, FanDuel: $17
Azaitar was originally booked to fight Matt Frevola at UFC 257, but he broke the COVID-19 protocols and was released from the UFC. Thankfully Azaitar is back and ready to continue his five-fight knockout streak. Azaitar is fighting for the first time in 27 months. Expect Azaitar to bring heavy pressure and lure Frevola into his wheelhouse. If Frevola takes the bait and slugs it out with Azaitar then his night will end before it gets started. According to Stokastic’s MMA DFS projections he has 50.4% win odds with a 38.2% chance for a knockout.
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