UFC Vegas 15: Smith vs Clark – 11.28.2020 – Staff Predictions, Picks, and DFS Analysis (FREE)

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Hello Daily Play Action! Welcome to our collaborative coverage of UFC Vegas 15: Smith vs Clark. A very successful year of UFC fights is coming to an end, but there are still several Vegas events remaining on the 2020 schedule. Our analysis includes a pick for every bout from Anthony Marro, Nicholas Marro and GB. We also feature write-ups that will provide consideration for building lineups on both FanDuel and DraftKings.

When building your lineups here are a few things to consider. Pricing differs for most fighters making some better value on one site over the other. Scoring is important as well. On FanDuel a first-round finish scores 5x the points as a decision, where on DraftKings it scores 3x as many. Grappling is also scored drastically different as FanDuel awards points for takedown defense and submission attempts. DraftKings neglects those two stats and instead values advances (such as to half guard, to mount…) and reversals. Lastly, you will only want to take two fighters from the same fight if you think it goes into the late rounds and expect both to reach value.

As coverage continues, we will keep our Daily Play Action records up to date. Be sure to check out our reasoning though as records will not reflect confidence, we will be picking all fights regardless of if we are betting on them. I highly recommend using Bovada for their user-friendly format and awesome deposit bonuses if you want to tail us and bet on any of these picks!

If you are looking for even more UFC content, be sure to also check out Daily Play Action on YouTube where we have begun streaming breakdowns of many UFC cards.

Nick: 215-114-5    Anthony: 201-128-5    GB: 195-134-5

Fight odds are as listed from Bovada and last updated 10:00 AM EST 11-28-2020

Preliminary Card- Starts 8:00pm EST

Luke Sanders -160 (DK $8400, FD $18) vs Nate Maness +130 (DK $7800, FD $13)

  • Anthony: This card opens with a 140-pound catchweight bout between Nate Maness and Luke Sanders. I am excited for this fight as much as any on the card and think it is going to be one of the most entertaining. Sanders a bit too old for me to back down at this low of a weight class. His record is good, but the wins are not overly impressive to me. He has been inactive for nearly two years and is more than likely going to be hunting for an early knockout here. I like the much bigger Maness in this bout who should benefit much more than his opponent regarding the extra five-pound allowance. I have been impressed by his last two performances and think he does enough on the feet here to beat Sanders. He should be able to win at least two rounds of a decision if he does not finish Sanders before the horn. Nate Maness by Round Three KO
  • Nick: Maness is coming off a nice win over Johnny Munoz Jr. He’s focused on fighting full-time for the first time in his career, as he recently quit his job as a roofer. Sanders hasn’t fought since he beat Renan Barao back in February of 2019. He got clipped early in that one, but he threw effective counters and showed an ability to eat shots and continue to move forward. He ate a huge right against Barao at the end of the first round, but he never really looked too dazed and it wasn’t long after that he was able to find the window for a finish of his own. Maness is coming out of a gym in which he’s the only professional fighter. Sanders trains at an excellent camp in Fight Ready. Sanders is a southpaw, but Maness has shown an ability to switch stances comfortably. I expect Maness to be content to stand and strike with Sanders here. He may be able to pull ahead on volume early, but Sanders should find that knockout. Maness has a strong right hook, but he telegraphs it to his opponents making it easy to duck and defend. Given the long layoff, it’s tough to get overly excited about backing Sanders here. Still, he’s the logical play. Sanders should also be able to control this fight on the mat if he needs to. Luke Sanders by Round Two KO
  • GB: Luke Sanders by Round One KO

Su Mudaerji -350 (DK $9100, FD $21) vs Malcolm Gordon +265 (DK $7100, FD $8)

  • Anthony: Up next is a flyweight bout featuring Malcolm Gordon and Su Mudaerji. This is a striker vs. grappler matchup that is very unlikely to see the judge’s scorecards. I really like Mudaerji in this spot as he moves down a weight class to face what I consider soft competition. I am very down on Gordon after his most recent performance against Amir Albazi. Getting submitted is not a good look for him and a being finished quickly hurts his chances going forward in my opinion. While he seems to be capable of scrambling he really needs to get in dominant positions in order to win fights. Against a guy as skilled as Mudaerji it is very hard to see Gordon coming away with a win this evening. We will likely see Mudaerji stuff takedowns and pick apart Gordon on the feet, resulting in a finish inside of ten minutes. You may want some exposure to Gordon in lineups as he is live for a submission, I just seriously doubt he can lock one up in this one. Su Mudaerji by Round Two KO
  • Nick: Gordon is coming off an ugly loss in his UFC debut against Amir Albazi. He was submitted in that one, which isn’t a good sign considering he’s a BJJ black belt and Albazi is only a purple belt. Su Mudaerji is primarily a striker. He keeps a wide and open stance, and his outstanding speed and footwork make him a tough target for any opponenet on the counter. His power is solid, but his outstanding volume and counterstriking ability are his greatest strengths. By most accounts, this is a classic striker vs. grappler match-up. Mudaerji is much better than Gordon will be on the feet, but Gordon has a significant grappling advantage on the mat. Gordon’s best bet here would be to try to take this fight to the mat, control position and then grind out a Submission, especially considering Mudaerji has been submitted several times before. However, I like that Mudaerji been working on his wrestling and takedown defense for the better part of this camp. He’s been out in Dagestan Russia with some of the better grapplers in the world, making a very conscious effort to address this very apparent hole in his game. The line definitely feels a bit too wide knowing Gordon’s strengths match Mudaerji’s main weakness. Gordon is live for the submission here, and for that reason I’ll have shares in DFS. However, Mudaerji’s advantage on the feet should be too much for Gordon to handle. I expect his height and recent grappling focused training will be enough to keep this on the feet long enough to find the window for the knockout. Su Mudaerji by Round One KO
  • GB: Su Mudaerji by Round Two KO

Gina Mazanay -205 (DK $8600, FD $19) vs Rachael Ostovich +165 (DK $7600, FD $11)

  • Anthony: Rachel Ostovich will face Gina Mazanay at flyweight next in what will likely be a disaster of a fight. As you may or may not know, Ostovich is a very attractive lady, but that does not translate to success in the octagon. There is no way I would consider backing Ostovich after a year layoff and losses to the likes of Paige VanZant and Montana de la Rosa. She has decent grappling but it is hard to imagine her finding success anywhere against Mazanay. The big problem though is Mazanay is never a safe bet to put money on. She has a very mediocre record as well and has lost her fair share of fights she was supposed to win. I would not bet a single dollar on this fight but the pick is Gina Mazanay. She is the far superior mixed martial artist. Gina Mazanay by Decision
  • Nick: Coming off an ugly loss with her career on a downturn, Mazany recently moved to Missouri to begin training at Glory MMA under the tutelage of James Krause. Krause is one of the more highly regarded coaches in the sport, so I fully expect her to look the best she ever has here. Mazany really has no one stand out skill, but she’s fairly well-rounded and should be able to hang regardless of where this fight goes. Rachael Ostovich is primarily a grappler, but it seems like her fighting career may be coming to an end. Ostovich hasn’t fought in over a year after dealing with a USADA suspension for a “tainted supplement”. She insists she’s had a great training camp, but she’s only been working with her own family members so it’s tough to take her word at face value. Ostovich also mentioned that if she loses here, this could be her last fight. Anytime a fighter mentions retirement we have to consider that a major red flag. This is a very low-level match-up and Mazany feels overpriced everywhere. Still, I expect her change in camp and overall focus for the sport to be enough to squeak out a victory. I really don’t like the price on Mazany here as she’s far from high-level herself. Still, she’s going to be the more focused fighter and she appeared to be in excellent shape at weigh-ins. The UFC would probably love for Ostovich to win here as her social media presence makes for easy marketing. However, brawn should beat beauty here once again. Gina Mazanay by Decision
  • GB: Rachael Ostovich by Decision

Martin Day -170 (DK $8800, FD $19) vs Anderson dos Santos +140 (DK $7400, FD $9)

  • Anthony: The preliminary card closes with this bantamweight bout between Anderson dos Santos and Martin Day. There is nothing impressive enough about Day to justify him being a favorite in my opinion. After the left hook knockout loss to Davey Grant it is difficult to gauge what kinds of ceiling Day really has. While he is a high volume striker with some finishes on his record, he has not fought nearly the competition that dos Santos has. I liked dos Santos’ appearance on the scale and believe he will be the stronger of the two men in the octagon for this fight. While Day has the cardio to go three rounds he will likely struggle to keep pace with dos Santos in this bout. A wrestling and grappling heavy approach could provide a lot of benefits to dos Antos in this one. I do not think he has the striking to stand for fifteen with Day but I do believe he can pour the pressure on inside the octagon. Neither of these guys are very high level but I am happy to side with the underdog in this fight. I think he has the weapons and experience to get the job done. Anderson dos Santos by Decision
  • Nick: Both of these guys could be fighting for their jobs here as they’re both coming off back-to-back losses. Day was KO’d late against Davey Grant his last time out, and dos Santos was picked apart against Andre Ewell. Day is primarily a striker. He’s tall and long for this division, so the one true advantage he has against most opponents is his well-developed boxing at range. He does a good job keeping a high pace, he throws solid volume and mixes in kicks effectively to set up his punches. Anderson dos Santos is a BJJ black belt, but most of his time fighting in the UFC has taken place on the feet. He seems to have a really solid chin, and he isn’t afraid to eat shots to throw them. His boxing is far from crisp, but he does put power behind his shots and his willingness to wear damage can allow him to string together decent combinations. If Day can keep this fight on the feet and at a safe distance, he should be able to win on the scorecards. However, I think the power dos Santos has combined with his offensive grappling ability should be enough for him to control where this fight goes until he eventually finds a window for a finish of his own.  It’s also encouraging that dos Santos looked outstanding on the scales at weigh-ins. He looked better prepared for this fight than he did leading up to his matchups with Andre Ewell and Nad Narimani, so I’m comfortable expecting we see an overall better version of him in this spot as well. This is another low-confidence pick, but I prefer the value on the underdog. Day’s striking is good, but his defense is suspect. Additionally, Anderson dos Santos has been in there against far tougher competition. Anderson dos Santos by Round Two Submission
  • GB: Martin Day by Round Two Submission

Main Card- Starts 10:00pm EST

Kai Kamaka -315 (DK $9200, FD $21) vs Jonathan Pearce +245 (DK $7000, FD $8)

  • Anthony: The main card opens with a featherweight bout between Kai Kamaka and Jonathan Pearce. I was on Pearce earlier in the week here but realized I’d much rather just fade this fight all together. Kamaka is the better martial artist and should be able to get the job done easily here. However, I very much fear the size and power coming back on the side of Pearce. He is much bigger than Kamaka and moving down from lightweight for this bout. After a year off, I think Pearce could very well be a changed fighter. Training at the MMA Lab absolutely builds a fighter’s skillset and confidence. Using his physical tools well may be just enough to get Pearce the win in this fight. Training his grappling and striking with some of the best in the world should pay off for the young fighter. However, the even younger fighter in Kamaka is on a run of his own. He has been more active in 2020 and now has won six fights in a row. While I think it is a very close fight, Kamaka should have a technical striking advantage large enough to secure a victory. Kai Kamaka by Decision
  • Nick: Pearce will be fighting here for the first time in over a year. He’s coming off an ugly loss to an aging Joe Lauzon, so there’s reason to believe the long lay-off was both necessary and beneficial. He was made quick work in that spot, but he’s still a younger fighter so it’s tough not to expect he used the time off to continue to improve. Kamaka is coming off a solid decision victory over another up-and-comer in Tony Kelley. The fight was awarded Fight of the Night, but as a -225 favorite one could argue Kamaka should have been able to finish Kelley inside-the-distance. While it’s true he’s yet to really flash his ceiling, Kamaka has looked solid since he jumped up to 145 pounds. He’s yet to lose a fight at this weight-class and he’s also undefeated under the UFC banner. He hasn’t really seen much high-level competition yet, but he’s looked great on the feet mixing punches and kicks to create clean and powerful combinations. He’s taking this fight on short notice, so while he is the better fighter here the line might be a bit too wide as there are questions around the quality of his camp. Pearce was awarded his BJJ purple belt back in July. He’s likely going to have an offensive grappling advantage here, but Kamaka has shown a strong grappling base on the regional scene and solid defensive grappling ability at the UFC level. The main reason I like Kamaka is that he has a very high Fight IQ. He’s going to have an advantage when this fight is on the feet, but he does have the ability and wherewithal to pursue a takedown of his own if he needs to pull back on the scorecards. Since we haven’t seen Pearce in a long time, there’s a chance he’s reborn here. Whenever a young guy is away this long there’s always a chance he’s improved dramatically. That being said, I prefer to side with the guy who has been proving it lately. The line is too wide and he’s overpriced, but he’s still my pick. Kai Kamaka by Decision
  • GB: Kai Kamaka by Decision

Ashlee Evans-Smith -150 (DK $8300, FD $14) vs Norma Dumont +120 (DK $7900, FD $16)

  • Anthony: Next on the card is a women’s bantamweight bout between Ashlee Evans-Smith and Norma Dumont. It is important to note the Dumont tipped the scales yesterday at nearly 140 pounds. Coming in that heavy gives her a distinct advantage in a women’s fight, but I still believe Evans-Smith gets the win here. Evans-Smith is the more experienced fighter and far superior striker of the two. Her last fight was nearly two years ago but I do not hold her in lower regard for losing to Andrea Lee. As long as she can stuff the takedowns of Dumont this is her fight to lose, and even if it were to hit the mat Evans-Smith would not be dead too quickly. The extra weight of Dumont could play a factor in wrestling and grappling exchanges, but it also may slow down her striking on the feet. It is hard to be confident in either side here, but I will take the favorite in what should be a one sided decision one way or the other. Ashlee Evans-Smith by Decision
  • Nick: Ashlee Evans-Smith is coming off of a near two-year long layoff. She said she took time to get sober, so there’s a decent chance we see a better version of her here than we did her last time out in a Loss to Andrea Lee. Evans-Smith is a high-volume striker. She has decent grappling ability, but she’s most comfortable on the feet and striking at range. Dumont can look decent on the feet, but she was leveled in her UFC debut against Megan Anderson. It’s tough to really pull anything away from that match, but she seemed to overextend for a punch that ultimate led to her being knocked out cold. Dumont’s clearest path to victory here is likely to shoot on Evans-Smith and try to take this fight to the mat. I expect Evans-Smiths BJJ blue belt and her 72 percent takedown defense to be enough to keep things on the feet. Evans-Smith lands nearly five strikes per minute, and I expect she’ll be able to pick Dumont apart. Since Dumont is such an enigma, I really don’t want too much money on this fight either way. I’m siding with the favorite, but my confidence level is low. I will say Evans-Smith is one of the more appealing options on FanDuel at $14. Proceed with caution though, as even if she wins there’s no guarantee she scores well in this spot. Ashlee Evans-Smith by Decision
  • GB: Norma Dumont by Decision

Spike Carlyle -185 (DK $8900, FD $19) vs Bill Algeo +150 (DK $7300, FD $10)

  • Anthony: Here we have a good featherweight bout between Spike Carlyle and Bill Algeo. I was a bit upset over the last decision Carlyle loss after betting on him but feel like he is fairly safe to go back to here. I like the tools that Carlyle possess for this weight class and the power advantage he has over most opponents. He has good wrestling and grappling so if he needs to rely on that here I trust he will be capable of doing so. The only downside of Carlyle’s game seems to be his cardio, so he will either need to get Algeo out in the first two rounds or Spike has to survive the third. I was impressed by Algeo in his most recent performance against Ricardo Lamas but this still feels like too tall a task for him. While he has the technical striking advantage in this one I am a concerned about him getting clipped and finished by Carlyle. I recommend high exposure to both when building DFS lineups but do think Carlyle gets the win here tonight. I just do not like betting him at this wide of a line. Spike Carlyle by Round Two KO
  • Nick: This should be a fun scrap between two up-and-comers at Featherweight.  Carlyle is coming off a hard-fought loss to Billy Quarantillo and Algeo is coming off a hard-fought lost to Ricardo Lamas. Both fighters will be looking to get in the win column here, but their respective stocks still feel relatively high coming off impressive performances as underdogs. Algeo’s striking looks solid offensively, but he often seems to leave himself open to counter-shots. He has a long frame, but he doesn’t fully utilize his reach advantage as he throws a lot of crosses and looping hooks. He puts together effective combos, but he often leaves his hands down to low against good counterpunchers. Algeo is likely going to have a grappling advantage here, but Carlyle is likely to be significantly stronger than him. I don’t really see Algeo’s wrestling as advanced enough to outweigh Carlyle’s strength advantage. Carlyle’s striking hasn’t looked great, but he’s been training his kickboxing with Giga Chikadze. This is one of the tougher fights on the card to call and my confidence level is fairly low here. Still, I expect Carlyle’s strength to be the deciding factor in this match-up. As long as he doesn’t burn through gas-tank too quickly, I see him overpowering Algeo in striking exchanges. He should be able to keep this fight on the feet for however long he needs to. He’s also strong enough that he can shoot for takedowns of his own. Spike Carlyle by Round Two KO
  • GB: Spike Carlyle by Round Three KO

Josh Parisian -205 (DK $9000, FD $22) vs Parker Porter +165 (DK $7200, FD $8)

  • Anthony: The featured bout takes place at heavyweight between Josh Parisian and Parker Porter. This is a very low-level fight, and it is hard to feel confident in Parisian, even as a moderate favorite. He has passed the eye test in his most recent fights but has been fighting very poor competition. I like the way Parisian sets up his strikes and when he gets on top of opponents, the fight usually ends shortly after. Parker Porter is about as bas as it gets in the UFC heavyweight division, yet he is still live in this bout. Parisian is unlikely to last a full three rounds in this one coming in looking rather heavy. Porter on the other hand seems to look in better shape than his last bout, though that is not saying very much. We will likely see an early knockout in this fight or Parisian taking over after bringing this fight to the ground. I will call a Parisian TKO from mount here in the late first or early second. Both are viable DFS options given their knockout upside, but I will own a lot more Parisian. Josh Parisian by Round One KO
  • Nick: We have a match-up between low-level heavyweights here. Porter has been fighting on the regional scene for years. He was considering retirement before he got the call to fight Chris Daukaus his last time out. A fight he lost embarrassingly, but one he said reinvigorated his love for the sport. Based on interviews leading up to this match-up, it seems like Porter is coming out of the best camp in his career. There’s really nothing that redeeming about him on film, but he does have power in his strikes, and he does have a lot more ring time over the course of his career than Parisian does. Josh Parisian is coming off a first round knockout victory on the Contender Series. He throws a lot of spinning attacks, which is a strange thing to see from a heavyweight. These moves can be effective, but he also compromises his gas tank if he can’t put his opponents out early. Luckily for Parisian, Porter is chinny. Parisian still has a long way to go if he’s going to compete in this division, but he should be able to get by Porter here. It feels like the UFC is hoping to build Parisian up in Main Card fight on this card. Porter has DFS appeal here as his one true path to victory is likely via knockout and I’m not all that impressed with Parisian. Still, I expect the favorite to win in this spot. Let’s hope this ends quick or it could be a sluggish 15-minutes. Josh Parisian by Round One KO
  • GB: Josh Parisian by Round One KO

Miguel Baeza -200 (DK $8700, FD $20) vs Takashi Sato +160 (DK $7500, FD $10)

  • Anthony: Perhaps the best fight on the card is our welterweight co-main event between Takashi Sato and Miguel Baeza. This is a fight that I have gone back and forth on all week. These two fighters are very high-volume strikers. I like what I have seen thus far from the younger Baeza in his two UFC wins. He has the size advantage over Sato and could find success slowing down his pace in this fight, perhaps picking him apart at range. However, Sato is a powerful striker with good footwork and combinations. You also have to give him credit for disposing of Jason Witt in under a minute in June. This is certainly a step up in competition for both fighters, but Sato has just shown me a lot more to like thus far in his career. While I do think Baeza has a bright future in the UFC, this feels like a spot where he is overvalued as a favorite and finds the first loss on his flawless professional record. Due to the striking heavy approach of these two they are both viable on FanDuel and DraftKings. I will probably end up with a higher exposure to Sato but I imagine the winner here finds his way into the optimal lineup. Takashi Sato by Round Two KO
  • Nick: If I had a pick for the Fight of The Night on this card, this would probably be it. These are two up-and-comers at welterweight. These guys are both extremely aggressive strikers and they’ve both shown an ability to still throw hard late in fights. Baeza likes to throw frequent leg-kicks. He uses them to both damage his opponents and keep them at range. He’s already shown that this is a vital part of his game plan against other strikers, but he could have some issues landing them as frequently against a southpaw in Sato. Sato likes to pick his shots so he unlikely to match Baeza in output here. However, he’s likely the more powerful striker of the two. It also seems like he may have a slight defensive advantage here as well as he defends 51 percent of the strikes thrown against him compared to Baeza’s 44 percent. I’ll have shares of Baeza for DFS purposes as it wouldn’t shock me if he got things here. He has shown flashes of excellence and while I’m still not sold on his future, I expect him to continue to improve. That being said, the value is all on Sato in what feels like a coin flip match-up. Sato is a Judo black belt, so while I don’t expect him to be content to play this fight out on the feet – he should be able to keep things there if Baeza tries to drag him to the mat. The main reason I’m backing Sato here, is that he showed us a lot in his loss to Belal Muhammed. I hold Muhammed to a high regard as he recently became ranked within this division. Sato looked good on the feet in that match-up and he did a good job getting back to his feet in grappling exchanges. Additionally, his last Win against Jason Witt is aging well as Witt now has a KO victory under the UFC banner. Both of these guys have promising upside, but Sato is further along in his development. Baeza should look good early, but I expect Sato to catch him eventually. Just make sure you hedge on some Baeza shares if you’re heavy on Sato for DFS purposes. Takashi Sato by Round Two KO
  • GB: Miguel Baeza by Round One KO

Anthony Smith -140 (DK $8500, FD $16) vs Devin Clark +110 (DK $7700, FD $15)

  • Anthony: The main event will be a fight at light heavyweight between Anthony Smith and Devin Clark. This is a short notice main event after Curtis Blaydes was forced to withdraw from his heavyweight bout against Derrick Lewis. Now instead we get these two middling 205ers headlining one of the worst cards of the year and fighting five rounds when they only prepared for three. I faded Smith in his two most recent losses and was preparing to do so again here. This is the perfect bounce back spot for Lionheart though and if he doesn’t win here it may be time to hang them up. Clark’s past six wins have come by decision as he usually tries to wrestle and wear on his opponents for the duration of each fight. I find it hard to believe his cardio will hold up for five rounds against a guy that has done it many times before. Smith is also the much bigger light heavyweight and will more than likely be able to keep things at range for a good portion of this bout. He will likely begin to pick up the pace as the fight wears on and eventually start hurting Clark on the feet. I expect the method of victory in this fight will be accumulation of damage. Once we enter the late rounds, I think either see Clark exhausting Smith or Smith flattening out Clark. Both are viable options when building you lineups and are especially appealing now that this fight is five rounds. Anthony Smith by Round Four Submission
  • Nick: Anthony Smith was a potential title contender before he was decimated by Glover Teixeira and Aleksandar Rakić his last two times out. He was dominated via grappling in both of those bouts, and he’s generally been having issues with bigger and stronger light heavyweights. Luckily for him, Devin Clark is actually one of the smaller guys in this division. Smith was visibly bigger than Clark at weigh-ins. He should be able to use his size and strength to negate the grappling ability of Clark and pick him apart as long as this fight stays on the feet. He’s going to significantly outclass him both in open space and in the clinch, and he has enough offensive grappling ability to use his BJJ to get out of tough positions if Clark is able to ground him. Clark is coming off a nice win over Alonzo Menifield as a +190 underdog. He managed to avoid the early onslaught from Menifield in that one and worked him against the cage for the Decision. He has some power in his strikes, but his hands move slowly so his chance at a KO is generally slim against high-level competition. This fighting being bumped to the main event is likely an edge for Anthony Smith. This will be Smith’s 7th consecutive main event, with 5 of his last 6 matchups (including this one) being scheduled for five rounds. Before his recent losses, Smith was known as a slow starter. He has shown outstanding cardio, and even in his recent losses he has shown serious toughness as even when he’s getting crushed he is difficult or impossible to put away. Clark doesn’t have anywhere near the finishing ability that Teixiera or Rakic did against Smith. He may look good early, but I expect the experience and size of Smith to be enough to get him back in the win column. He should be able to keep this fight in the center of the ring for however long he needs it to. Anthony Smith by Round Three KO
  • GB: Anthony Smith by Decision

*Anthony, Nick and GB play on both FanDuel and DraftKings, and although they express their opinions, they may also implement other plays and strategies without notice