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UFC on ABC 3 Main Event: Brian Ortega vs Yair Rodríguez Preview

UFC betting tips

Brian Ortega and Yair Rodriguez clash in the main event of UFC on ABC 3 this Saturday night. This battle between two of the promotion’s top featherweights will determine who ranks third best in the division right behind Alexander Volkanovski and Max Holloway.

(Betting odds via BETMGM Sportsbook)

Featherweight: Brian Ortega (-155) vs Yair Rodriguez (+135)

Brian Ortega (15-2-0) had his last fight at UFC 266 in September when he lost by decision to Alexander Volkanovski in his bout for the UFC Featherweight Championship. Ortega has now lost two of his last three fights, though neither was a bad loss as they came in championship fights against Volkanovski and Max Holloway, and both earned Fight of the Night honors. The 31-year-old featherweight is 15-0-0 outside of those two losses including a 7-0-0 UFC record in non-title fights.

Yair Rodriguez (13-3-0) failed to secure a UFC Featherweight Championship shot in a title eliminator fight against Max Holloway last November, losing by decision in what was the Fight of the Night in a five-round main event slot. Rodriguez is 2-2-0 over his last four fights since going 8-0-0 over his previous eight fights with a 6-0-0 start to his UFC career. The other loss on his UFC record came via technical knockout to Frankie Edgar at UFC 211 in 2017.

This should be an interesting fight between two fighters with conflicting styles. While Ortega can certainly hold his own as a striker, he’ll want to take this fight to the mat as often as possible with a clear grappling advantage over his opponent. Rodriguez meanwhile is a dangerous and talented striker who has picked up three of his last five wins by knockout. His reckless attacking style makes for exciting fights and always puts him one well-timed combo away from a victory.

While there are legitimate cases for both sides in this one, we keep finding ourselves leaning towards Ortega. Prior to his decision win over Chan Sung Jung, each of Ortega’s prior six wins came via stoppage with three knockouts and three submission wins. Considering the fact that his only two losses have come against two of the best in the business and that he’s got an extra path to victory in the ground game in this main event bout, we’ll roll with Ortega to cement his spot as the new No. 1 contender for Volkanovski’s title.

Brian Ortega by Submission

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