With the return of the Black Beast to the Octagon just days away, we're here to break down the action at UFC Fight Night 199.
All odds featured are available at FanDuel.
Saturday's fight card also contains a battle between bonafide UFC veterans, as Cub Swanson takes on Darren Elkins at 145lbs.
When analysts talk about fighters that have seen and done it all inside the Octagon, both these names should be among the first on their lists. Elkins has been in the UFC since 2010, and is currently tied with Max Holloway for the most fights in the UFC's featherweight division.
Swanson on the other hand is no rookie in his own right. Making his debut under the ZUFFA banner all the way back in 2007 at World Extreme Cagefighting, Swanson has gone on to cement himself as one of the greatest fighters never to have held UFC gold, holding wins over the likes of Jeremy Stephens, Artem Lobov, Dustin Poirier, and current reigning 155lbs world champion Charles Oliveira en route to eight UFC post-fight bonuses.
Though neither fighter is likely to be challenging for a title any time soon, both men have proved in recent performances that they still have a lot left in the tank. As a result, picking a winner in a fight such as this is no easy task. With that being said picking Elkins to weather the storm and ultimately get his hand raised at +375 seems to be the value bet here.
UFC veteran strawweight Angela Hill returns to the Octagon on Saturday with one of her toughest assignments to date in the form of Brazilian prospect Amanda Lemos.
One of the most active female fighters in the UFC, Saturday's main card bout will mark Hill's 16th fight in the promotion, since featuring on the 20th season of The Ultimate Fighter back in 2014. Despite possessing some of the best Muay Thai in her division, Hill has so far been unable to string multiple wins together to produce the kind of run that is required to earn a shot at the belt.
However, the former Invicta Strawweight Champion could go a long way into putting herself back in contention with a win over Lemos.
Despite a disappointing stoppage loss at the hands of veteran Leslie Smith in her UFC debut back in 2017, Amanda Lemos has emphatically rebounded in recent performances and has gone on to record four consecutive victories in the 115lb division, picking up four stoppages in the process to catapult herself into the UFC Strawweight rankings. As a result, Lemos is a heavy betting favourite.
It is worth noting that despite suffering eight losses during her UFC career, Hill has only been finished once via submission, and has never been stopped by strikes. Hill will need to be at her best to get her hand raised on Saturday night, but she has all the skills to do so and at +500 she might just be worth adding to your parlay.
Saturday's co-main event sees the return of two-time UFC title challenger and all-around fan favourite, Stephen Wonderboy Thompson, as he takes on perennial contender Belal Muhammad.
The fight marks the first time that Wonderboy has stepped foot in the Octagon since he suffered a defeat at the hands of Gilbert Burns at UFC 264 back in July. At the time, many in the MMA community believed that a win would be enough to earn Thompson a shot at reigning champ Kamaru Usman but it wasn't to be.
Standing across the cage from Wonderboy on Saturday night will be Belal Muhammad, a welterweight contender who has lost just once since 2017. Muhammad is possibly best known for his fight against Leon Edwards where he suffered an accidental eye poke and was unable to continue, resulting in a no contest. However, in his most recent trip to the cage, Muhammad picked up the biggest win of his UFC career to date against two-time UFC title challenger, and BJJ expert, Damien Maia.
Though Muhammad has youth in his favour, and may well still reach the upper echelons of the division, he does not have the striking skills or the power to significantly deter Thompson on the feet, nor does he have the wrestling pedigree to stifle the karate master on the mat. With that in mind, a Wonderboy decision victory is a safe bet.
Possibly the most beloved fighter on the entire UFC roster, the Black Beast Derrick Lewis combines his endearing personality with some of the most explosive knockout power in the history of combat sports.
The last time we saw Lewis in the Octagon was in August, as he faced off against Ciryl Gane with the UFC interim Heavyweight Championship on the line. Lewis would ultimately come up short that night, marking the second time that he has been unsuccessful in picking up UFC gold.
Lewis returns to the Octagon in the main event on Saturday, looking to once again climb up the ranks of the heavyweight division. However, standing in his way is Chris Daukaus, a BJJ black belt who has won all four of his UFC fights by knockout.
Now, of course, you're probably thinking that you would have to be crazy to bet on anything other than a knockout in a battle between two KO artists. And you might be right. But, for those looking for a solid underdog bet to add to their parlay a Lewis decision might actually be the way to go. After all, Lewis has been to the judges on several occasions in his UFC tenure, (I mean who could forget that snoozefest that was him vs Ngannou?) and it could well happen again if he and Daukaus neutralise one another on the feet.
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