UFC Fight Night 148 Odds & Expert Prediction

Posted by Derrick Harper on March 21, 2019 in

We have a preview on the upcoming UFC Fight Night 148. Here are the latest MMA Odds for it.

UFC Fight Night 148 Odds & Expert Prediction

Thompson vs. Pettis

This main event came out of nowhere, and while it initially felt somewhat pointless in the grand scheme of things, at least Kamaru Usman’s title win at UFC 235 has made Stephen Thompson a relevant contender again. Still, Thompson badly needs a good performance to restore his place in the welterweight division.

Much has been made regarding the legitimacy of Thompson’s litany of kickboxing titles, but after a rough start, it translated well to the UFC level, as “Wonderboy” managed to string together a highlight reel of knockouts on his way up the ladder. However, after a win over Johny Hendricks that made Thompson a true contender, the party came to a screeching halt.

After a series of duds, Thompson has struggled to show he can be an entertaining fight. Pettis’ kicking game sticks out, particularly to the body, as a way for the former lightweight champion to connect from range himself and not necessarily allow Thompson to stay defensive and fight a winning fight.

While Pettis’ durability does seem to have lessened from its ridiculous peak, he might be able to get away with staying aggressive but not having his lights put out by a big Thompson counter. Still, the overall contours of the fight favor Thompson.

Marlon Vera vs. Frankie Saenz

Frankie Saenz (12-5) scored one of the biggest numerical upsets in recent UFC history with his 2015 decision over Iuri Alcantara and followed it up with a decision over Sirwan Kakai, but subsequently lost three straight. A controversial decision over Merab Dvalishvili got him back on track, and he followed that up by beating another of Vera’s castmates in Henry Briones.

As good as Vera is, his wrestling remains an Achilles’ heel he doesn’t seem poised to fix anytime soon. He’s been taken down at least once in all but two of his UFC fights, and he only had to deal with one cumulative attempt in that span. Saenz may not have much to offer outside of grit and decent takedowns, but that’s really all he needs here.

Vera’s options are keeping the fight at range, trying to exploit Saenz’s remarkably porous defensive wrestling, or attempting to catch a submission off of his back. The first one’s unlikely, considering that shorter men in Lineker and Andrade regularly worked their ways into the pocket, and Vera’s generally not a super capable offensive wrestler. That leaves his guard, which I believe Saenz can navigate for 15 minutes.

Alexis Davis vs. Jennifer Maia

Alexis Davis went 5-2 as a UFC Bantamweight before successfully debuting at 125 pounds with a decision over Liz Carmouche. This set up a bout with the rising Katlyn Chookagian, who narrowly edged Davis with her volume striking.

Jennifer Maia defeated Vanessa Porto to win the Invicta Flyweight title in 2016. She is two inches shorter than Davis and will give up four inches of reach. Maia’s biggest problem is that she’s a five-round fighter stuck in three-round fights.

Before she gets going, she’s easy to hit and especially easy to take down. Davis has the striking and grappling to do both, at least for the first two rounds, and she’s gritty enough to keep it close even when Maia gets into gear. Davis really just needs to focus on her takedowns, but if she fights smart, she should be able to at least rack up enough time on top to get the decision.

Enjoy the fights of UFC Fight Night 148!