DraftKings MMA Mixed Martial Arts DFS Analysis Picks Plays Advice Strategy

UFC FIGHT NIGHT 165 – December 20, 2019


Some fights are much easier to project for scoring than others. I have listed three fights that show good potential for scoring and therefore should be used a good deal in DFS contests this week.


The odds on this matchup are much closer than I would have originally anticipated. Rakic has made short work of his last two opponents, scoring first round wins by KO in his last two fights. He is 4-0 in the UFC, including 3 scores over 100 FP. His opponent, Volkan Oezdemir, has lost three of his last four fights. Upon closer inspection, however, Oezdemir is 3-3 over his last six fights with all three victories coming by KO (two in the first round and one in the second). His losses in that span were high quality ones at the hands of Dominick Reyes, Anthony Smith and Daniel Cormier. I still think Rakic could be favored by more here, but the potential of Oezdemir here is certainly present. This fight is currently -165 to end before the final bell and an early conclusion bonus is more likely than not.

Caveman’s advice: Both fighters are priced well below their potential due mainly to the fact that they both have the ability to knock out their opponent and on the other hand the potential to be knocked out. It seems rather certain that the winner of this fight should score well and this fight should get good exposure in multi-entry contests. Give this fight 60-70% exposure with a 60/40 split favoring Rakic.

(At the time of this writing, Aleksandar Rakic is -151 with the oddsmakers and has a projected score of 62.88 on Fantasy Cruncher. Volkan Oezdemir is +126 with the oddsmakers and has a projected score of 50.07 on Fantasy Cruncher.)


These fighters are nearly equal on the betting lines and have similar records. Barcelos is 14-1 (with his last loss being over five and half years ago) and Nurmagomedov is 13-1 (with his last lost coming in just under five and a half years ago). Both fighters are undefeated in the UFC, with Barcelos a perfect 3-0 and Nurmagomedov a perfect 2-0. This fight features two fighters on a similar track, but only one can earn a victory on Saturday night. The biggest difference between these fighters in DFS contests are in salary and average. Barcelos is averaging 35 FPPF more than Nurmagomedov but is also priced $600 more.

Caveman’s advice: Both fighters have scoring potential, but Barcelos has been the more consistent scorer against UFC competition with 100% of totals eclipsing the century mark. Nurmagomedov has one score over 100 points in his two fights. Given the greater consistency Barcelos has for high scoring, he is the better play, but Nurmagomedov’s cheaper salary nearly bridges the gap. Give this fight a good amount of exposure in multi-entry contests, in the range of 50-60%, with a 60/40 split favoring Barcelos.

(At the time of this writing, Raoni Barcelos is -110 with the oddsmakers and has a projected score of 56.04 on Fantasy Cruncher. Said Nurmagomedov is -112 with the oddsmakers and has a projected score of 56.74 on Fantasy Cruncher.)


This event’s Main Event features a matchup of two quality featherweights in the UFC. Despite losing two of this last three fights (to Brian Ortega and Max Holloway), Edgar is 3-2 over his last five and has quality victories over Cub Swanson and Yair Rodriguez to add to his losses to some of the division’s best. The Korean Zombie is also 3-2 over his last five with wins over Renato Moicano and Dustin Poirier in that span. In those three victories, Jung has averaged 109.5 FPPF compared to Edgar at 89.3 FPPF in his last three victories.

Caveman’s advice: This fight is another fight with good scoring potential for both fighters. Over their careers they have similar averages (Jung at 86.4 FPPF and Edgar at 82.1 FPPF) but recent trends make Jung the better scorer. He is a significant favorite as well and should get more play, but Edgar is priced very low and deserves play as well. Use this fight quite a bit in your multi-entry lineups with a 70-80% exposure, and give a 70/30 split in favor of the Korean Zombie.

(At the time of this writing, Chan Sung Jung is -182 with the oddsmakers and has projected score of 82.39 on Fantasy Cruncher. Frankie Edgar is +152 with the oddsmakers and has a projected score of 60.63 on Fantasy Cruncher.)

That’s all for this week. Good luck with your lineups!

About Rob

Since getting out of the casino business, Rob has been playing DFS regularly with a focus on MMA and NASCAR. He now lives in Denver, CO.

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