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UFC 251: Ribas vs VanZant betting picks & predictions

Ribas vs VanZandt UFC 251

Amanda Ribas vs Paige VanZandt

Latest Odds & Fight Info
UFC betting odds Ribas -909.09 at BetOnline | VanZandt +600 at BetOnline
When Sunday, July 12 – 6am GST
Where UFC Fight Island – Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Watch Live ESPN+, UFC Fight Pass, UFC.com

UFC 251 fight preview: Amanda Ribas vs Paige VanZant

Amanda Ribas (9-1-0) enters her women’s flyweight bout at UFC 251 as the biggest favorite on the main card. Her stock has steadily risen since joining the UFC last June, when she cashed in as a betting underdog in her debut against Emily Whitmore with a rear-naked choke submission victory. Ribas followed that win up with another upset victory over Mackenzie Dern in October, handing Dern her first loss with the promotion via unanimous decision. The 26-year-old improved to 3-0 in the UFC with her win on March 14 over Randa Markos.

Paige VanZant (8-4-0) is on the last fight of her UFC contract. Once an extremely popular prospect with a 6-1 professional record and a 3-0 start to her UFC career, VanZant has since lost three of her last five fights. Her last fight came all the way back in January of 2019, when she defeated Rachael Ostovich to snap a two-fight losing streak.

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There is always some room for concern when a fighter is coming up in weight, as Ribas is coming up from strawweight to take this bout at flyweight. But considering that Ribas usually starts camp at over 140 pounds before cutting down to 115, she shouldn’t feel too uncomfortable at 125 coming off of a less severe cut during quarantine.

It’s difficult to find a path to victory for VanZant. Ribas has had three fights and three wins since VanZant’s last turn in the octagon. She is a superior striker and should have an edge if the fight gets to the mat as well. VanZant isn’t a pushover; she’s got power, toughness, and plenty of endurance. But she’s outmatched here against Ribas and will need some kind of fluky finish to pull off an upset.

With so much chalk on Ribas, there isn’t much value on the moneyline outside of a possible parlay sweetener. Ribas backers should try to handicap her exact style of victory, which could be a difficult task given that her nine wins have been split evenly between three knockouts, three submissions, and three decisions. We lean decision.

Amanda Ribas by points decision

+110 @ BetOnline
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