UFC on ESPN 22 ‘Whittaker v Gastelum’: Preston’s Precise Picks+Best Bet

The Line: Alexandr Romanov (-142) v Juan Espino (+120)

What a stellar card we have tonight. A bountiful amount of betting opportunities. Remember it feels good to be right but it pays to get it right. Once the card gets past the first four bouts we find ourselves in an intriguing matchup with action I can’t pass up on.

Two giants take the octagon meeting for the first time in their respective careers. In what some are calling ‘The grappling match of a lifetime’. Alexandr Romanov enters this fight with a perfect (13-0) record. His opponent and ten years the elder is Juan Espino; bolstering an (11-1) record.

Espino will carry a one inch height advantage and five inch reach advantage in this bout. Along with the edge in experience. Alexandr Romanov will bring a bit more weight to this fight and overall size does go in his favor. Romanov has been impressive in the ground game since showing up in the UFC back on September 12th, 2020. This will be Romanov’s toughest test yet against a higher level grappler and veteran in Juan Espino.

Espino averages 14.19 takedowns per fifteen minute fight with a 77% takedown efficiency. That is 7.84 more takedowns than Romanov. Espino also averages 6.1 submission attempts per fifteen minute fight. That is 2.9 more attempts than Romanov.

My belief is both fighters will be surprised at how strong the other is. With both fighters being more grappling based and utilizing solid striking defense the case is easy to make for this fight going deep in rounds and possibly to the judges scorecards.

Preston’s Best Bet: Alexandr Romanov v Juan Espino OVER 1.5 rounds (-112)

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