Surging heavyweight prospect Jailton Almeida will take on veteran contender Derrick Lewis in the main event of UFC Fight Night: Almeida vs. Lewis on Saturday. The five-round battle of tanked heavyweights will close the curtain on the main UFC fight card starting at 9 p.m. ET from Sao Paulo, Brazil. The No. 9-ranked Almeida has won his first five UFC appearances by stoppage and will likely cement his status as a title contender if he gives another impressive outing at UFC Sao Paulo. His first headlining appearance ended in a first-round submission of Jairzinho Rozenstruik in May. But the No. 10-ranked Lewis, who has twice challenged for the heavyweight title, hopes to derail the prospect’s momentum by pulling off the upset.
Almeida is the -480 betting favorite (risk $480 to win $100), while Lewis is priced at +370 in the latest UFC Fight Night: Almeida vs. Lewis odds. Before locking in any UFC Fight Night: Almeida vs. Lewis picks, make sure you see the MMA predictions and betting advice from proven SportsLine expert Daniel Vithlani.
From breaking down film and following fighters and their camps closely, to tracking sharp action and betting market signals, Vithlani covers the breadth of the MMA betting landscape top to bottom. He also trains amateur boxers and speaks regularly with MMA fighters to understand the sport’s nuances.
In his SportsLine debut for UFC 283 in January, Vithlani swept the main card and has been a consistent winner ever since. At UFC 292, he called the upset for underdog Sean O’Malley (+210) against Aljamain Sterling (-250) in the bantamweight championship main event. Anyone who has followed Vithlani already has seen massive returns.
Now, with UFC Fight Night: Almeida vs. Lewis in sight, Vithlani has scoured the card from top to bottom and released his top selections. You can see those picks at SportsLine.
UFC Fight Night: Almeida vs. Lewis preview
Almeida (19-2) has a showcase opportunity Saturday before his hometown fans, and another dominant performance will likely lift him into the top-five rankings in the top-heavy division. The 32-year-old Brazilian has finished each of his first five UFC fights within two rounds, with three submissions and two knockouts.
Almeida’s combination of athleticism, a world-class ground game and ample stand-up acumen has reminded many observers of top-ranked heavyweight Cyril Gane, who has a similar profile and was fast-tracked by the UFC into title contention. Gane captured the interim title with a knockout of Lewis, but has since lost title fights to former champion Francis Ngannou and current champion Jon Jones.
The ceiling for Almeida remains to be seen, but a matchup with Lewis provides the first real litmus test of his UFC career.
Lewis (27-11-1) holds the UFC record for knockouts with 14, which is also the top mark for the heavyweight division. The 38-year-old Texan remains one of the most popular fighters on the roster because of his devastating knockout power and irreverent sense of humor.
Although Lewis has numerous notable victories, he appeared to be on the downside of his career when he suffered three consecutive stoppage losses inside of two rounds to coveted prospects. But just when it appeared the UFC brass had relegated him to the role of top-10 gatekeeper, he reminded MMA observers what he’s still capable of with a 33-second knockout of de Lima. You can only see who to pick at UFC Fight Night here.
UFC Fight Night predictions
We’ll share one of Vithlani’s UFC Fight Night selections here: He is siding with Ismael Bonfim (-520) to get his hand raised against Vinc Pichel (+390) in a lightweight battle to kick off the main card.
Bonfim (19-4) is a former standout in the Legacy Fighting Alliance who is considered one of the lightweight division’s more promising prospects. He is known for his versatility and power punching. However, the 27-year-old Brazilian is looking to bounce back from a first-round submission loss to Benoit St. Denis in July.
Pichel (14-3) is a rugged 11-year UFC veteran who is known for his durability and pace. Although the California native recently turned 40, he has won three of his past four fights. Pichel is coming off a narrow decision loss to prospect Mark Madsen in April of last year.
“Bonfim has a lot of power in his left hook, and he can throw explosive flying knees to counter takedown attempts. Pichel is likely to get clipped with one of these, then submitted,” Vithlani told SportsLine. See who to back here.
How to make UFC Fight Night picks
Vithlani has strong picks for Almeida vs. Lewis and other bouts on the UFC Sao Paulo card. He’s also backing a fighter whose “MMA game is dangerous in every area” to emerge with a dominant victory. Those UFC Fight Night picks are only available at SportsLine.
Who wins UFC Fight Night: Almeida vs. Lewis and how exactly does each fight end? Visit SportsLine now to get detailed picks on every fight at UFC Fight Night, all from the MMA expert who profited more than $6,200 in 2022, and find out.
UFC Fight Night odds, fight card
See full UFC Fight Night picks, predictions, best bets here.
Jailton Almeida (-480) vs. Derrick Lewis (+370)
Gabriel Bonfim (-590) vs. Nicolas Dalby (+440)
Caio Borralho (-265) vs. Abus Magomedov (+215)
Armen Petrosyan (-120) vs. Rodolfo Viera (+105)
Ismael Bonfim (-520) vs. Vinc Pichel (+390)
Victor Hugo (+200) vs. Daniel Marcos (-245)
Esteban Ribovics (+130) vs. Elves Brenner (-160)
Rinat Fakhretdinov (-345) vs. Elizeu Zaleski Dos Santos (+265)
Vitor Petrino (-220) vs. Modestas Bukauskas (+180)
Angela Hill (+105) vs. Denise Gomes (-125)