On Saturday, November 7th, the UFC will be live from their APEX Center in Las Vegas for UFC on ESPN+ 40: Santos vs Teixeira also known as UFC on ESPN 17, UFC Fight Night 182 and UFC Vegas 13. The main card action is set to begin at 10PM ET on ESPN+ with a 7PM ET start time for the preliminary fights.
The main event of the night is a battle of Top 3 light heavyweights as the #1 ranked Thiago Santos takes on the #3 ranked Glover Teixeira. The winner of this fight will most likely be next in line for a light heavyweight title fight in early 2021.
Also on the main card is a Top 8 women’s strawweight fight as the 4th ranked Claudia Gadelha takes on the 8th ranked Xianonan Yan. 15th ranked middleweight Ian Heinisch will be in action as will other fighters like Raoni Barcelos and heavyweights Andrei Arlovski taking on Tanner Boser.
UFC betting sites have released their full slate of odds for this event. Let’s step inside the betting octagon to examine these lines, identify any potential betting value, and put these predictions in a triangle chokehold.
This top 8 women’s strawweight bout will most likely open up the main card action as the #4 Claudia Gadelha takes on the #8 Xiaonan Yan.
Gadelha enters as the slight underdog and on a two fight win streak. She’s 7-4 inside the octagon and last fought in May where she defeated the tough Angela Hill via split decision. Nine of her 18 pro wins have come via stoppage with seven via submission. She’s 9-4 when going the distance.
Yan enters this bout on a 10 fight win streak including going 5-0 inside the octagon. She last fought in February and defeated Karolina Kowaliewicz via unanimous decision. She also beat Angela Hill in June 2019. Five of her 12 pro wins have come via TKO/KO. She’s 7-0 when going to a decision.
If we’re comparing their last fights, Yan looked better in her win than Gadelha did. In fact, there’s an argument to be made that Claudia lost her fight against Hill.
I fully expect this fight to go Over 2.5 rounds (-300) and the full distance (-280). All five of Yan’s UFC bouts have gone to a decision. 10 of Gadelha’s last 11 fights have gone the distance as well. Additionally, Gadelha has never been stopped in her career. All four losses have come via decision.
Once with the judges, I believe it will be Yan picking up the decision (+125), which offers the best value in this contest. She’s 7-0 when going to the scorecards. Furthermore, Yan is the better striker, has more power, and is more fluid on her feet than Gadelha.
Yan can hang on the mat if the fight ends up there, whereas Gadelha will be outgunned in a firefight.
Claudia Gadelha vs Xiaonan Yan –Yan (-135)
Over 2.5 rounds (-300)
Fight goes the distance (-280)
Yan wins via decision (+125)
Raoni Barcelos vs Khalid Taha
Raoni Barcelos (-350)
Khalid Taha (+290)
Over (+100)/Under (-120) 2.5 rounds
This fight was originally scheduled as Jack Shore taking on Khalid Taha. However, Shore was forced to withdraw from the event and Raoni Barcelos has stepped up to take this bout on a little more than one week’s notice.
Khalid Taha hasn’t fought in the octagon in 13 months where he went to a No Contest with Bruno Silva. He debuted with the UFC in the summer of 2018 and has gone 1-1 with 1 NC since then. He’s returning from a suspension for a positive drug test, which is why his fight with Silva was ruled a NC.
11 of his 13 pro wins have come via stoppage with nine by way of TKO/KO. He’s 2-1 when going the distance.
Raoni Barcelos is on an eight fight win streak including going 4-0 in the octagon since joining the UFC in the summer of 2018. He’s an underrated bantamweight who last fought 11 months ago and defeated Said Nurmagomedov via unanimous decision.
10 of his 15 pro wins have come via stoppage with eight by way of TKO/KO. He’s 5-0 when going the distance.
Barcelos is the largest betting favorite of the main card and largely due to his overall MMA skills, which is on a higher level than Taha’s.
I’ll give Taha credit and pick this fight to go over 2.5 rounds (+100) and the full distance (-110), but Barcelos will get the clear cut win. He will outwork Taha on the mat or upright and I believe this will finally help Barcelos crack the Top 15 in the division.
The fight going over 2.5 rounds offers the best value at +100 odds.
Raoni Barcelos vs Khalid Taha –Barcelos (-350)
Over 2.5 rounds (+100)
Fight goes the distance (-110)
Barcelos wins via decision (+175)
Ian Heinisch vs Brendan Allen
Ian Heinisch (-110)
Brendan Allen (-110)
Over (-200)/Under (+175) 2.5 rounds
According to online betting sites, this is the closest contest on the main card as these two middleweights have the same -110 odds.
Brendan Allen might be unranked in the middleweight division, but a win on Saturday could propel him into the Top 15. The 24 year old has won seven straight fights including going 3-0 in the UFC since debuting for the promotion a little over a year ago.
He last fought in June and defeated Kyle Daukaus via unanimous decision. 13 of his 15 pro wins have come via stoppage with eight victories by way of submission. He’s 2-2 when going the distance.
These two men have had some less than cordial interactions since their time in the LFA a few years ago. Since then, the two have exchanged words and have been looking towards punching each other in the face. Allen made the following comments about his opponent on Saturday:
“It’s going to happen so long as he shows up and does whatever he says he’s going to do this time, but I don’t have anything to say in regards to him. I’m going to let it show on Fight Night. If he’s the better man, so be it, but I don’t think that is going to be the case.”
Ian Heinisch is the #15 ranked middleweight and could possibly crack the Top 10 with a win this weekend. He last fought in June and defeated GM3 via 1st round TKO, which snapped a two fight losing skid. Heinisch is 3-2 since joining the UFC two years ago.
Seven of his 14 pro wins have come via stoppage with five by way of TKO/KO. He’s 7-2 when going the distance in a fight.
Heinisch acknowledged that they have exchanged words in the past, but he doesn’t view this as a rivalry. Instead, Ian believes that Allen is just a stepping stone and that he will finish him:
“I will finish him early or I will finish him late. In the middle, it will be a lot of scrambling and grinding him out until he is worn out. I’ll finish him. Or, I’ll catch him right off the bat because he loves to blitz and get into your face quickly. If he wants to step in that zone quickly I’ll be letting them fly. I see a finish.
I’ve enjoyed Heinisch’s tenure in the UFC as he provides plenty of action whenever he steps inside the octagon. I believe this fight will be no different. I expect fireworks for the full three rounds as I believe they’re going to go to a decision (-175) despite what Heinisch said.
I give Heinisch the edge has he has faced tougher competition in the UFC than Allen has. Furthermore, I believe that Ian has the advantage in power, striking and overall physicality. Allen should have the advantage on the mat if the fight goes there.
I like Heinisch to win this bout via decision as he should tally more points due to his striking advantage. Four of his five UFC fights have gone the distance and nine of his 17 pro bouts have gone to a decision. Allen went to a decision in his last bout.
The best value for this bout is each fighter’s moneyline. Since I’m going with Heinisch, his -110 odds offer solid value.
Ian Heinisch vs Brendan Allen –Heinisch (-110)
Over 2.5 rounds (-200)
Fight goes the distance (-175)
Heinisch wins via decision (+175)
Andrei Arlovski vs Tanner Boser
Andrei Arlovski (+235)
Tanner Boser (-275)
Over (-145)/Under (+125) 2.5 rounds
The co-main event of the night is a heavyweight contest that will have plenty of fireworks between two hard hitters who like to go for the knockout.
Every time I see Arlovski’s name on a fight card, I cringe and then marvel at his lengthy career. It’s been over 15 years since he was a UFC champion, and despite stretches where it looked like he was done as a fighter, Arlovski continues to compete and have some success.
This weekend’s contest will be the 51st of his career as he last fought in May and beat Philipe Lins via decision. He’s 2-2 in his last four fights and doesn’t show signs of slowing down at 41 years of age.
20 of his 29 pro wins have come via stoppage with 17 by way of TKO/KO. He’s 9-7 when going the distance.
Tanner Boser has won two straight fights which has bumped his UFC record up to 3-1 since joining the promotion in October 2019. He last fought in July and defeated Raphael Pessoa via 2nd round TKO. He also beat Philipe Lins via 1st round KO. He’s 2-0 in 2020 so far.
12 of his 19 pro wins have come via stoppage with 10 by way of TKO/KO. He’s 7-5-1 when going the distance.
The Over/Under is set at 2.5 rounds, but I see too much firepower between these two men for this fight to go the distance (-110). With that said, I’m torn on whether or not this bout goes O/U 2.5 rounds. The value is with the Under, so we’ll go with that at +125 odds.
I believe Boser is on the rise and could crack the Top 15 rankings with a win on Saturday. His leg kicks will set up his power shots that could eventually rock Arlovski and lead to a TKO/KO. 11 of Arlovski’s 19 losses have come via TKO/KO.
I like what I’ve seen from Boser over the last few fights and I believe he’s going to pummel Arlovski this weekend. The best value for this fight is Boser winning inside the distance at +150 odds.
Andrei Arlovski vs Tanner Boser –Boser (-275)
Under 2.5 rounds (+125)
Fight ends inside the distance (-110)
Boser wins inside the distance (+150)
Boser wins via TKO/KO (+315)
Thiago Santos vs Glover Teixeira
Thiago Santos (-240)
Glover Teixeira (+200)
Over (-140)/Under (+120) 1.5 rounds
The main event of the night is a battle of Top 3 light heavyweights where the winner will become the #1 contender for the light heavyweight championship. However, the winner won’t get a title shot until after Jan Blachowicz takes on Israel Adesanya in a super fight sometime in January 2021.
Glover Teixeira is the #3 ranked light heavyweight and has seen a resurgence in his career. The 41 year old has won four straight fights including a brutal victory over Anthony Smith in May. It was a fantastic performance by Teixeira and it proved that he is still a contender even at this age.
26 of his 31 pro wins have come via stoppage with 18 by way of TKO/KO. He’s 5-4 when going the distance. Three of his last four wins have come via stoppage.
Thiago Santos is the #1 ranked light heavyweight and is returning to the octagon for the first time since his split decision loss to Jon Jones 16 months ago. He hasn’t competed since then due to injuries he sustained which required surgery.
Prior to the loss to Jones, Santos had won four fights in a row including a 3rd round TKO over the current light heavyweight champ Jan Blachowicz in February 2019. 16 of his 21 pro wins have come via stoppage with 15 by way of TKO/KO. He’s 5-2 when going the distance.
Santos has the striking advantage, the power advantage, and the overall athletic advantage in this matchup. However, Teixeira does have the grappling advantage if the fight goes to the mat, which I highly doubt it will.
Rather, I believe this fight will be a war on the feet. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was a bloody battle between these two rugged Brazilians.
With that said, I like Santos in this matchup. I believe he will return to the form that earned him a title shot against Jones and pushed the GOAT to a split decision.
I see Santos winning this fight in the latter rounds as Teixeira is a tough man to put away early on. Teixeira has only lost one time in Under 1.5 rounds, so go with the Over (-140) for this contest. But, take the prop that this fight will not go the distance (-405).
The best value for this bout is Santos winning inside the distance (-155). You could also make a case for the prop bet of Santos winning via TKO/KO (-125) as the best value play as well.
Thiago Santos vs Glover Teixeira –Santos (-240)
Over 1.5 rounds (-140)
Fight doesn’t go the distance (-405)
Santos wins inside the distance (-155)
Santos wins via TKO/KO (-125)
As a longtime freelance writer, avid sports fan, former athlete, and experienced sports bettor, Rick Rockwell has risen up the ranks at GamblingSites.org to become the self-professed “King of the Blog” in his first year with the site. …