UFC Vegas 93
Alex Perez +190 over Tatsuro Taira

Pinnacle +190 BET365 +175 Sportsinteraction +180 888Sport +162

Posted at 11:00 AM EST. Odds subject to change.

UFC Vegas 93 - Live on ESPN +

Wager: Alex Perez ML (best odds: +190 at 888Sport)

12:45 AM EST. The main event of UFC Vegas 93 is a clash between two dynamic flyweights, one where oddsmakers are forced into a tough position. Tatsuro Taira is an undefeated Japanese fighter who the UFC thinks could be a big star. He's been a -500 favorite or greater in every bout he's been given in the company, and to his credit he's stepped up. Taira has made mince-meat of his inferior opponents, mostly by way of submission, and he carries an elite jiu-jitsu background. Taira typically likes to earn takedowns or kick his opponent into a more vulnerable position; once the enemy leaves himself open to danger, the 24-year old can capitalize in swift fashion, something that his opponent will need to be cautious of through tonight's main event.

But while sportsbooks are somewhat obligated to buy the hype and list Taira as a slight favorite tonight, we do not have to chase such steam. Firstly, Taira just doesn't carry an impressive history of opponents. Although he's "done his job," he's faced a rolodex of no-names in his UFC rise, earning his way through the ranks of the Flyweight division and now finally receiving a competitor who's bound to provide a much more formidable challenge. He's also facing a guy with a history that reveals a who's-who of elite opponents.

Alex Perez has lost three times the last 5 years, but let's consider who those losses came against: Deiveson Figueiredo, a former Flyweight Champion, Alexandre Pantoja, the current Flyweight Champion, and he lost a decision battle against Muhammad Mokaev, an undefeated berzerker who will likely challenge for the title in the near future. Otherwise, the 32-year old has a long resume of TKO/decision wins against UFC veterans over the last 7 years, and he's shown progress with every new bout he takes. He's also very efficient in takedown defense (82%), and he packs serious power in his 126 pound-frame.

The biggest edges in this bout are both of Perez's side: he's a more powerful striker, by far, and he has significant experience against elite fighters. This is a huge uptick in class for Taira, and while his potential and skill sets are obvious, there is simply no evidence that he can hang with a puncher like Alex Perez. Taira's frame is not very thick, he's more noodly and light, and one well-timed strike by Perez could flip this fight instantly. Perez is also a skilled submission artist, earning 7 of his 25 victories by forcing his opponent to tap out, so he's no stranger to grappling and scrapping on the mat when he has to. Oddsmakers are giving us a beautiful price on a fighter who's in his prime and won't feel any nerves in tonight's bout, and we can't look away.



Our Pick

Alex Perez +190 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 3.80)