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Contender Series Week 4: Standing and Banging

Plenty of Action to Satiate Tuesday Fight Fans

Week 4 of the Contender Series features the usual array of matchups optimized for scintillating finishes and brawls. This is a tasty appetizer for the weekend’s UFC 266. We’re following up last week’s success – we got five out of six bets right – with another one mixed with underdog and chalk bets. Check out each fight and their MMA odds.

  • Date: Tuesday, 8 p.m. ET
  • Venue: UFC Apex, Enterprise, Nevada
  • Watch on: ESPN

Contender Series Week 4

Hashem Arkhagha vs AJ Dobson

Moneyline: Hashem Arkhagha Ev, AJ Dobson -130
Total: Over 1½ (+155), Under 1½ (-190)
Weight Class (Rounds): Middleweight (185 lbs)

Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images/AFP

Talk about seeing the under get steamed here. We can’t blame folks as both Hashem Arkhagha (6-0) and AJ Dobson (5-0, 1 NC) are heavy hitters. Arkhagha has a 100 percent finishing rate while Dobson has four of his five victories via first-round finish. Both men are fast starters who focus more on offense than defense.

— Nick🕹️🥋 (@MuggleAmok) September 19, 2021

This is a tough spot to bet so parlaying the under sounds like the UFC best bet. Expect both Arkhagha and Dobson to meet in the middle and throw some haymakers. This one should end quickly so don’t blink.

Pick: Under 1½ (-190)

Michael Morales vs Nikolay Veretennikov

Moneyline: Nikolay Veretennikov -220, Michael Morales +175
Total: Over 1½ (-160), Under 1½ (+130)
Weight Class (Rounds): Welterweight (170 lbs ) (3 Rounds)

Young prospect Michael Morales (11-0) faces 34-year-old wrestler Nikolay Veretennikov (9-3) originally from Kazakhstan. Veretennikov is a sizable favorite on the sportsbook thanks to his experience (his opponents have a 49-28 combined record) and wrestling. He should be able to wrestle Morales down and grind him out to a victory or late finish.

Pick: Nikolay Veretennikov -220

Steve Nguyen vs Theo Rlayang

Moneyline: Steven Nguyen -300, Theo Rlayang +220
Total: Over 1½ (-175), Under 1½ (+145)
Weight Class (Rounds): Featherweight (145 lbs ) (3 Rounds)

Steven Nguyen (7-1) and Theo Rlayang (5-0) may just steal the show thanks to having fan-friendly albeit flawed styles. Both men have a well-rounded game but are strikers at heart. Expect them to stand in the middle of the cage and throw heavy leather. The edge goes to Nguyen who has a Knockout of the Year contender in his pocket. But bet the under for the best value.

Pick: Under 1½ (+135)

Kleydson Rodrigues vs Santo Curatolo

Moneyline: Santo Curatolo Ev, Kleydson Rodrigues -130
Total: Over 1½ (-145), Under 1½ (+115)
Weight Class (Rounds): Flyweight (125 lbs ) (3 Rounds)

Kleydson Rodrigues (6-1) could be the next big thing out of Team Nogueira as the Brazilian is ready to make his UFC debut. He hasn’t lost in six years, is explosive and great from anywhere. However, it’ll be tough sledding against Santo Curatolo (6-1), who is also solid all-around. However, Curatolo may get worn down by the third round as Rodrigues ekes out a decision this way.

Pick: Kleydson Rodrigues -130

Jaco Rosales vs Victor Martinez

Moneyline: Jacob Rosales -200, Victor Martinez +160
Total: Over 2½ (-110), Under 2½ (-110)
Weight Class (Rounds): Lightweight (155 lbs ) (3 Rounds)

Victor Martinez (12-4) has great odds here as an underdog. Jacob Rosales (13-6) has a size advantage and is incredibly durable, but he’s .500 in his last four fights and is very hittable. Martinez should be able to put it on Rosales over the course of three rounds for an undisputed decision. Find Martinez as the best underdog on this card when betting online.

Pick: Victor Martinez +160

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