Rafael Dos Anjos says it’s difficult to find an opponent, so the former champion is happy to take on rising star Rafael Fiziev on Saturday in the main event of UFC Fight Night: Dos Anjos vs. Fiziev. The matchup of ranked lightweights anchors the main UFC fight card (9 p.m. ET) from the Apex facility in Las Vegas. The No. 7-ranked Dos Anjos is a former champion who is hoping to make one more title run. He told the media this week that he asked for fights against all top-five contenders but was turned down. Instead, he took the best available option in the No. 10-ranked Fiziev, a versatile prospect who can get the first signature win of his career by defeating a former titleholder.
Fiziev is a -210 favorite (risk $210 to win $100), while Dos Anjos is priced at +185 in the latest UFC Fight Night: Dos Anjos vs. Fiziev odds from Caesars Sportsbook. In the co-main event, middleweight prospects square off as Caio Borralho (-200) takes on Armen Petrosyan (+175). Before locking in any picks of your own for UFC Fight Night: Dos Anjos vs. Fiziev, make sure you check out the MMA predictions and betting advice from SportsLine expert Andrew Gombas.
Gombas is a former NCAA wrestler who taps into his experience on the mat to help understand and dissect the X’s and O’s of MMA matchups in a manner that sets him apart from other MMA analysts. He started the MMA handicapping service MMA Knockout Bets in 2018 and has shown a profit every year since.
With more than 1,400 selections tracked by the third-party monitoring service Bet MMA, he has shown a 6 percent return on investment for his followers. Over the past two years, his followers have netted a profit of more than $10,000.
Just last month at UFC 275, Gombas swept the board with his main-card picks, and the five-fight sweep included advising SportsLine members to back Jake Matthews (+125) against Andre Fialho (-145) in a matchup of welterweight prospects. Matthews dominated from the outset and scored a second-round stoppage to provide Gombas’ backers with another easy winner. Anyone who has followed Gombas already has seen massive returns.
Now, with UFC Fight Night: Dos Anjos vs. Fiziev looming, Gombas has studied the card from every angle and released his top MMA picks. Those picks are only available at SportsLine.
UFC Fight Night: Dos Anjos vs. Fiziev preview
The main event Saturday should provide some clarity, at least for the two combatants, in a division that is rich with decorated veterans but also chock full of talented prospects who are determined to show that they belong at the top.
With a victory, Dos Anjos (31-13), 37, could prove that he still belongs in the crowded mix for title consideration. However, a loss might push him to the role of top-10 gatekeeper for prospects such as Fiziev (11-1), who is taking a major step forward in competition by facing the former champion.
Dos Anjos won the lightweight title with a decision over Anthony Pettis in March 2015 and defended it once by beating Donald Cerrone before relinquishing the crown to Eddie Alvarez. His resume also includes wins over Nate Diaz and former welterweight champion Robbie Lawler.
The Brazilian moved to welterweight five years ago, but found it difficult to compete with the division’s elite while posting a 4-4 record. He came up short against the likes of current champion Kamaru Usman and top-ranked contender Colby Covington. But he has won two straight since returning to lightweight and is coming off a win against veteran Renato Moicano in March.
Fiziev has shown a lethal blend of mastery in numerous disciplines including Muay Thai, combat sambo, boxing and wrestling. The 29-year-old Kyrgyzstani dropped his UFC debut by first-round stoppage to Magomed Mustafaev in April 2019 but has since reeled off five straight victories.
Fiziev has earned performance bonuses in each of his past four fights and showed all his tools in an explosive knockout of fellow prospect Brad Riddell in December. You can only see who to back at UFC Fight Night here.
Top UFC Fight Night picks
We’ll share one of Gombas’ UFC Fight Night selections here: He is siding with Antonina Shevchenko (-170) to get past Cortney Casey (+150) in a matchup of women’s flyweight prospects.
Antonina Shevchenko (9-4) is the older sister of current flyweight champion Valentina Shevchenko. The elder sibling has shown signs of potential and she won her roster spot with a victory on “Dana White’s Contender Series.” But she has struggled of late against upper-tier competition and is coming off a loss to fellow prospect Casey O’Neill last October.
Casey (10-9) is a seven-year UFC veteran who has seen her share of ups and downs while posting a 6-8 record with the promotion. However, three of her losses have come by split decision and she broke a two-fight skid with a decision win over Liana Jojua in November.
“Shevchenko has struggled lately against grapplers. Casey is primarily a striker, so I see this being Shevchenko’s most favorable matchup in a while. I expect Shevchenko to be the better technical striker and dominate the clinch battle,” Gombas told SportsLine. See who else to pick here.
How to make UFC Fight Night picks
Gombas also has strong picks for Dos Anjos vs. Fiziev and other fights on the UFC Fight Night card. He’s also backing a fighter who will “get his grappling going” and emerge with a dominant victory. Those UFC Fight Night picks are only available at SportsLine.
Who wins Dos Anjos vs. Fiziev? And what other picks do you need to make? Visit SportsLine now to get detailed top picks for UFC Fight Night, all from the insider who’s up more than $10,000 on MMA picks the past two years, and find out.
UFC Fight Night odds, fight card
Get full UFC expert picks and predictions here.
Rafael Fiziev (-210) vs. Rafael Dos Anjos (+185)
Caio Borralho (-200) vs. Armen Petrosyan (+175)
Said Nurmagomedov (-265) vs. Douglas Silva (+225)
Jared Vanderaa (-180) vs. Chase Sherman (+160)
Jamie Mullarkey (-240) vs. Michael Johnson (+200)
Cynthia Calvillo (-145) vs. Nina Nunes (+125)
Ricky Turcios (-190) vs. Aiemann Zahabi (+170)
Antonina Shevchenko (-170) vs. Cortney Casey (+150)
Tresean Gore (-135) vs. Cody Brundage (+115)
Kennedy Nzechukwu (-135) vs. Karl Roberson (+115)
Ronnie Lawrence (-135) vs. Saidyokub Kakhramono (+115)