UFC 276 DFS Preview & Predictions: The MMA Mashup

UFC 276 DFS Preview & Predictions: The MMA Mashup

This article is part of our UFC Picks series.

UFC 276 is stacked from top to bottom with fights that are not only pleasing to fans but intriguing from a DFS perspective. We'll cover every bout on the 12-fight slate across four platforms, including a veteran known for chopping opponents down to size and an action fighter with a chin made out of granite. 

Without further ado, let's get to it.

Plays to Consider on DraftKings

Jessica-Rose Clark ($8,600)

Clark was outmuscled by Stephanie Egger in February but continued trying to get the fight to the floor and work her ground game until she was caught in a submission. Julija Stoliarenko has had a difficult time implementing her game plan at the highest level, as she has seemingly been at a strength disadvantage in all three of her UFC fights. This should allow Clark to get back to the wrestling that served her so well against Joselyne Edwards. She will need to protect her arms while she is on the ground, but Clark's submission loss to Egger was her first in 19 professional fights, and I can't trust Stoliarenko to get the job done against an experienced opponent.

Maycee Barber ($9,100)

The upshot of Barber losing confidence in her striking has been a marked increase in her wrestling and grappling. "The Future" has shot for 15 takedowns over her last three fights, racking up seven minutes of clinch control time in her bout with Montana De La Rosa. Jessica Eye will enter the contest sporting just a 57 percent takedown defense rate, having been taken down at least twice six times in her UFC career. Barber hasn't scored more than 79 DraftKings points in either of her last two wins, but the physicality advantage here may allow her to put together a dominating performance.

Andre Muniz ($9,200)

For a brief period after his fight with Krzysztof Jotko, it looked like Uriah Hall was finally ready to be an aggressive fighter, but listless performances against a clearly out-of-form Anderson Silva and Sean Strickland have relegated him back to my "do not trust" list. If he doesn't need to worry about a pressuring opponent, Muniz will have all the time he needs to close the range with kicks and get the fight to the floor to work his jui-jitsu. Persistent grapplers haven't had many issues getting "Primetime" to the ground, as he was taken down a total of seven times in two fights against Strickland and Antonio Carlos Junior.

Gabriel Green ($7,400)

Green never stopped coming forward despite being dropped hard by Yohan Lainesse. That aggressive style should pay big dividends against Ian Garry, who is far too comfortable giving ground in the Octagon. A five-inch height disadvantage will make it difficult for Green to get past Garry's jab, which means that we should see the wrestling game "gifted" showed in his fight with Philip Rowe. Garry will likely land a few damaging strikes, but I don't think he will be able to keep up with the pace of Green, and his toughness will ensure that the Irish fighter will need to get the better of his opponent over three rounds.

Plays to Consider on SuperDraft

Max Holloway – 2.2 X Multiplier

Alexander Volkanovski may have walked away with the win in their second fight, but Max looked so sharp early that it's hard for me to pass on a multiplier like this. The former featherweight champ made a key adjustment in 2020, utilizing kicks as the taller fighter. This led to a knockdown late in the first round, as well as more success with his counters as Volkanovski rushed to close the distance.  He will need to mind the leg kicks and stay aggressive, but I think Max will be able to find the volume and damage necessary to regain the title.

Pedro Munhoz – 2.35 X Multiplier

Sean O'Malley's speed and seven-inch reach advantage may be enough to win this fight without even taking into account technique, but the weight "Sugar" puts on his lead leg will make it a large target for Munhoz, who has taken opponents apart with kicks in the past. We have seen O'Malley injure his leg in fights before (once as the direct result of a kick) and "The Punisher" is tough enough to stay in the fight and fire those strikes for 15 minutes. It's also worth noting that, while he has gotten better at circling off the fence, O'Malley can still be backed up by pressuring fighters, which could work to close down some of the range mentioned above.

 Bryan Barberena – 2.05 X Multiplier

The return of Nick Diaz was notable due to the fact that he waved the white flag in Round 3, but Stockton's own had acquitted himself fairly well to that point, landing in combination and mixing his targets. Barberena is unlikely to have his cardio fail him, nor will he look as slow as Diaz, who was returning to the Octagon for the first time since 2015. "Bam Bam" should have no problem staying in Robbie Lawler's face and overwhelming him with volume, as we saw in numerous fights prior to the Diaz scrap. Lawler may look to come out fast, but I seriously doubt that he will be able to keep up the pace against such an aggressive opponent.

Plays to Consider on Prize Picks

Jalin Turner UNDER 1.0 Takedowns,  Dricus Du Plessis UNDER 1.0 Takedowns, and Sean Strickland OVER 2.0 Takedowns

Turner will have physical advantages over most of the fighters in this division, but standing eight inches taller than his opponent, it's tough to imagine that the Tarantula will want to close the distance for Brad Riddell or spend much time in close quarters. Instead, Turner will likely try and sit behind a jab while Riddell will be the one looking to grapple.

Dricus Du Plessis is an explosive striker but reacts so poorly to being hit that it's no surprise he mixed in a few takedowns against a fluid striker like Trevin Giles. Brad Tavares is a crisp, fundamental boxer who is always agile and won't over-stride into the clinch. He will also come into this contest sporting a 79 percent takedown defense rate. This means that even if he is able to get his hands on Tavares, it's unlikely that Du Plessis will be able to bring him to the ground.

He may not use it much, but Sean Strickland has shown himself to be a very capable wrestler. Not only did he ground Uriah Hall four times in 25 minutes, but he also took down physically strong grappler Court McGee three times in 2017. Alex Pereira has done well to get back to his feet, but we can't ignore the fact that the explosive striker was taken down two times apiece by Andreas Michailidis and Bruno Silva, two men who had never shown wrestling acumen prior to facing Pereira. Strickland may be a boxer by trade, but I think he will do whatever he can to make sure he doesn't have to stay in the range of such a powerful kickboxer.

Plays to Consider on Monkey Knife Fight

Jim Miller OVER 57.5 Strikes and Donald Cerrone OVER 49.5 Strikes

With Cerrone having been finished in four of his last six fights and Miller getting KO/TKO wins in each of his last two bouts, it's no wonder that MKF is projecting an early finish here. While the durability of both men can be seen as questionable, I don't see either as a dedicated finisher at this point in their careers. I think it's more likely that the two will open by having a measured kickboxing match. This can lead to either finding a big shot, but I expect clinch work will be a part of Miller's game plan, which should mean short shots in close from both parties.

Israel Adesanya UNDER 95.5 Strikes and Jared Cannonier UNDER 87.5 Strikes

These totals may seem light for a five-round bout, but both of these men tend to fight at a slower pace, landing under 4.00 strikes per minute in their respective UFC careers. Add in the fact that these two have landed a grand total of two takedowns combined in 25 bouts, and it begins to look like we will see an even-paced kickboxing bout for 25 minutes. Though either competitor could finish his opponent, it must be pointed out that Cannonier has only been stopped twice in 20 professional fights, while "Stylebender" was beaten by decision in his only MMA loss.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Christopher Olson plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: DraftKings: Sommerset, FanDuel: Christop, Yahoo: Martins.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Christopher Olson
Christopher Olson writes DFS articles and blogs for a variety of sports including MLB, NFL and MMA. Follow him on Twitter @RealChrisOlson
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