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UFC Vegas 76 Picks, Predictions & UFC Best Bets For Strickland vs. Magomedov

Adam Martin for Bookies.com

Adam Martin  | 11 mins

UFC Vegas 76 Picks, Predictions & UFC Best Bets For Strickland vs. Magomedov

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The UFC heads back to its headquarters in Las Vegas this Saturday for another Fight Night card. It’s UFC Vegas 76, and the card features 12 fights in total, including a five-round middleweight main event between Sean Strickland and Abus Magomedov. 

We will break down the headliner, plus two of the undercard bouts, in this week’s edition of our UFC picks right here at Bookies.com.

UFC Vegas 76 Odds

Favorite Underdog
Sean Strickland | -165 Abus Magomedov | +140

Odds via DraftKings sportsbook and current as of publication. Check out our DraftKings sportsbook review.

UFC Vegas 76 Main Event Best Bet

Sean Strickland (-165) vs. Abus Magomedov (+140)

In the main event of UFC Vegas 76, Sean Strickland fights Abus Magomedov in a five-round middleweight bout. Strickland is a -165 favorite on betting apps, and I like him to win this fight.

Strickland is the No. 7 ranked UFC middleweight. The 32-year-old American is 13-5 overall in the UFC, which includes wins over the likes of ranked fighters such as Brendan Allen, Nassourdine Imavov, and Jack Hermansson. 

Strickland is a meat-and-potatoes type of fighter, but he’s very effective at what he does. He has excellent boxing skills, his takedown defense is solid, he has a good chin, and his cardio is fantastic. Although he doesn’t have insane KO power or anything, his skill set has been good enough for him to win a lot of fights in the Octagon. 

Against Magomedov, Strickland will be looking to avoid the early storm of his opponent, drag this fight out into the later rounds, and take this fight on the judges’ scorecards.

As for Magomedov, he is a bit of a wild card here. The 32-year-old Russian-born, German-based fighter has over 30 fights of MMA experience, but he has only fought one time in the UFC. 

Granted, that was a quick first-round TKO win over Dustin Stoltzfus, but it didn’t show us much other than he has knockout power, which we already knew. He is still untested against top-10 middleweights such as Strickland, and we simply do not know how good his cardio is if this fight goes into the later rounds. 

No doubt Magomedov will have a chance to get a quick finish in this fight since he is so explosive, but if he doesn’t win early, he likely won’t win at all.

While Magomedov is a highly-experienced fighter, he only has one UFC fight, and his sample of work at the highest level of the sport is still a question mark. 

Strickland, meanwhile, has been in the UFC for nearly a decade and is now one of the middleweight division’s top fighters. I favor Strickland to use his jab to control the pace of this fight and outstrike Magomedov over the course of five rounds to win the decision on the judges’ scorecards. Go with Strickland to win this fight as a -165 betting favorite, and take him to win by decision if you like prop bets.

UFC Vegas 76 Best Bet: Sean Strickland wins at -165 at DraftKings Sportsbook  

UFC Vegas 76 Best Prop Bet: Sean Strickland wins by decision at DraftKings Sportsbook  

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Other UFC Vegas 76 Best Bets

Rinat Fakhretdinov (-200) vs. Kevin Lee (+170)

In the featured prelim, Rinat Fakhretdinov takes on Kevin Lee in a welterweight bout. Fakhretdinov is a -200 betting favorite, and he should be able to win this fight.

Fakhretdinov is a 31-year-old Russian fighter who has won his last 16 fights in a row. Since joining the UFC last year, he has won both of his fights inside the Octagon with decision victories over Bryan Battle and Andreas Michailidis. Fakhretdinov is a strong, powerful wrestler who is able to take his opponents down and control them, and on the feet, he has power in his strikes, as well. 

He looks like someone who is going to be a top-15 fighter in the UFC welterweight division very soon, and a win over Lee would help push him closer to it.

Lee, meanwhile, is a long-time UFC fighter who is making his return to the Octagon following a win over Diego Sanchez in Eagle FC. All-time, Lee has an 11-7 record in the Octagon, which is a solid overall showing. 

The 30-year-old American has some huge wins in his career over the likes of Michael Chiesa and Edson Barboza, but most of his best work came when he was fighting at 155 lbs. At 170 lbs, Lee is going to be undersized, and I don’t like this move-up in weight classes for him. The last time we saw him fight at 170 lbs in the UFC, he lost a decision to Daniel Rodriguez, and I have a feeling this fight with Fakhretdinov will look similar to that.

I’m still not sure why Lee is fighting at 170 lbs, as he’s a much more effective fighter down at 155 lbs. In this particular matchup, I see Fakhretdinov being the superior grappler and striker, and outpointing Lee in order to win this fight on the scorecards. Give me Fakhretdinov is a -200 betting favorite to win this fight, and take him to win by decision if you want to bet on a prop.

UFC Vegas 76 Best Bet: Rinat Fakhretdinov wins at -200 at DraftKings Sportsbook  

UFC Vegas 76 Best Prop Bet: Rinat Fakhretdinov wins by decision at DraftKings Sportsbook  

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Alexandr Romanov (-135) vs. Blagoy Ivanov (+115)

Kicking off the card is a heavyweight bout between Alexandr Romanov and Blagoy Ivanov. Despite Ivanov being a +115 underdog, I favor him to win this fight.

Romanov is the No. 14 ranked UFC heavyweight. The 32-year-old Moldovan began his MMA career with 16 straight wins, including five wins in a row in the UFC, and he was looking like a future title contender. However, in his last two flights, he has been exposed badly. Against Marcin Tybura last year, Romanov started off strong before quickly gassing out in the Utah elevation and losing a decision for his first career defeat. 

Then, against Alexander Volkov earlier this year, Romanov looked even worse when he suffered a first-round TKO loss. They say you are only as good as your last fight, and Romanov did not look UFC-caliber his last time out.

As for Ivanov, he is the No. 15 ranked heavyweight in the UFC. The 36-year-old Bulgarian joined the UFC in 2018 and he has a 3-3 record in the Octagon so far, including notable wins over Tai Tuivasa and Marcos Rogerio de Lima. All of his UFC fights have gone the distance, showing how tough Ivanov is and how good his conditioning is to last the full 15 minutes with so many hard-hitting heavyweights. 

vanov isn’t an explosive knockout artist or anything, but he’s solid everywhere, and when taking on a flawed fighter like Romanov, that might be enough to win. As long as Ivanov is able to get out of the first round, this should be his fight for the taking.

Romanov looked terrible in his last fight, so to get a quality fighter like Ivanov here at plus money is the bet to make. Ivanov has an iron chin, great cardio, and tons of experience, and I expect him to lean into all of that in order to beat Romanov in this fight. Give me Ivanov to win this bout as a +115 betting underdog, and take him to win by decision for a prop bet.

UFC Vegas 76 Best Bet: Blagoy Ivanov wins at -135 at DraftKings Sportsbook  

UFC Vegas 76 Best Prop Bet: Blagoy Ivanov wins by decision at DraftKings Sportsbook  

About the Author

Adam Martin for Bookies.com
Adam Martin
A writer based out of Toronto, Adam Martin has covered professional sports, with an emphasis on sports gambling, for more than a decade, writing for such outlets as The Toronto Star and Sportsnet. He is an expert in UFC, while also covering NHL betting and the Stanley Cup.