The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Light Heavyweight division plays host to a high-stakes crossroads match this Saturday (May 14, 2022) when Aleksandar Rakic and Jan Blachowicz headline the latest show inside UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada. In UFC Vegas 54’s co-main event — and also at 205 pounds — Ion Cutelaba and Ryan Spann meet in a clash of brutal finishers, while Katlyn Chookagian meets Amanda Ribas in a pivotal women’s Flyweight battle.
Splurge too much last weekend on a Mother’s Day gift? Let’s recoup those losses …
What Went Wrong at UFC 274?
I like to think I’m a straight shooter with you guys. I’ll accept a narrow decision that didn’t go my way and admit when I was the benefactor of wonky judging. Keep that in mind when I say that Kleydson Rodrigues won the first and third rounds of his fight with C.J. Vergara and they weren’t particularly close … just awful judging.
We still managed a solid profit, but I’m cranky.
UFC Vegas 54 Odds For The Undercard:
Andrea Lee (-110) vs. Viviane Araujo (-110)
Michael Johnson (-150) vs. Alan Patrick (+130)
Virna Jandiroba (-165) vs. Angela Hill (+145)
Tetsuro Taira (-240) vs. Carlos Candelario (+195)
Nick Maximov (-380) vs. Andre Petroski (+290)
Thoughts: Ugh, that’s not a pleasant sight. The only ones I can think to recommend are Virna Jandiroba and Tetsuro Taira … and that’s with reservations.
Even with her increasingly apparent shortcomings, Jandiroba has the stylistic edge over Angela Hill, who’s given up takedowns to far inferior wrestlers like Ashley Yoder in recent efforts. Cardio could once again prove an issue for her, but since Hill lacks the ground chaps to frustrate her like Amanda Ribas and Mackenzie Dern did, “Carcara” seems like as good an investment as any on this undercard.
As for Taira, it really comes down to whether he’ll show urgency. His ground game vastly eclipses Carlos Candelario’s and he’s not too shabby on the feet, either. He is, however, worryingly passive at times. While the paranoid part of my brain is screaming at me that he’ll sit in first gear and drop a split decision, things should work out.
UFC Vegas 54 Odds For The Main Card:
Aleksandar Rakic (-190) vs. Jan Blachowicz (+160)
Ion Cutelaba (-220) vs. Ryan Spann (+180)
Katlyn Chookagian (-170) vs. Amanda Ribas (+150)
Davey Grant (-290) vs. Louis Smolka (+230)
Manuel Torres (-130) vs. Frank Camacho (+110)
Jake Hadley (-210) vs. Allan Nascimento (+175)
Thoughts: Another line up where a ton can go wrong. I’ll be lazy and just pick the biggest favorites: Ion Cutelaba and Davey Grant.
Ryan Spann’s durability has long been one of his biggest weaknesses — Anthony Smith smashed the fight right out of him last time and he almost lost to Sam Alvey because of his inability to take a punch. Cutelaba is more than powerful enough to demolish Spann on the feet, plus a sufficiently skilled wrestler to take Spann’s ground game out of the equation.
Grant has a similarly favorable match up with Louis Smolka. “Da Last Samurai” has proven increasingly fragile of late and lacks the wrestling chops to avoid the sort of slugfest in which “Dangerous” thrives.
UFC Vegas 54 Best Bets:
- Parlay — Davey Grant and Virna Jandiroba: Bet $100 to make $116
- Parlay — Tatsuro Taira and Ion Cutelaba: Bet $100 to make $106
I mean, at least we get to see Davey Grant in action again. See you Saturday, Maniacs.
Initial Investment For 2022: $600
Current Total: $1,700.25
Remember that MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Vegas 54 fight card right here, starting with the ESPN2/ESPN+ “Prelims” matches, which are scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m. ET, then the remaining main card balance (on ESPN2/ESPN+) at 10 p.m. ET.
To check out the latest and greatest UFC Vegas 54: “Blachowicz vs. Rakic” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here.