UFC Saudi Arabia Preliminary Card Best Bets: Explosive Predictions and Profitable Picks

Author:
Oddstrader
Kyung Ho Kang UFC 295 New York City
Kyung Ho Kang of South Korea punches John Castaneda in a 138-pound catchweight fight during the UFC 295 event at Madison Square Garden on November 11, 2023 in New York City. Sarah Stier/Getty Images/AFP

The UFC travels to The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia this weekend, and we’re covering all your betting needs for a Middle Eastern fight card stacked with top-tier talent from top to bottom.

Let’s waste no more time and dive right into the most noteworthy betting picks for the UFC Saudi Arabia preliminary card bouts.

Picks Summary


Rinat Fakhretdinov vs. Nicolas Dalby

UFC Saudi Arabia Welterweight Preliminary Bout

Saturday, June 22, 2024 – 12:00 PM ET at Kingdom Arena


Rinat Fakhretdinov

Since joining the UFC in 2022, one of the latest Russian prospects, Rinat Fakhretdinov, has been impressive for the most part. While I don’t envision a future title contender and a top-5 contender in his future, this takedown machine who can swing with the best of them will certainly pose problems for welterweights in the middle of the pack.

  • Fakhretdinov Pro Record: 22-2-1
  • Fakhretdinov KO/TKO Wins: 11
  • Fakhretdinov Submission Wins: 7

Nicolas Dalby

Nicolas Dalby, “The Parlay Killer,” and “The Underdog Legend” can be referred to by many nicknames after his recent run. The 12-fight UFC vet has won five of his previous six bouts as a significant betting underdog. The question is, can he do it again this weekend?

  • Dalby Pro Record: 23-4-1
  • Dalby KO/TKO Wins: 7
  • Dalby Submission Wins: 4

Fight Tape Analysis

Volume punching, cardio, durability, and Dalby’s forward-pressure style have assisted him in the octagon on many occasions. Opponents of his want to hope they have three rounds of cardio because the Danish brute thrives once the ten-minute mark is reached.

Unfortunately for Dalby, he doesn’t seem to excel in one area. Sure, he’s serviceable in striking and grappling, but there isn’t much to separate his skill set from the mediocre category.

Most concerning for the underdog would be his takedown defense. Rinat loves a takedown or ten, and we know this game plan will likely surface this weekend. In all but one of his UFC bouts to date, the Russian has landed multiple takedowns, but he won’t have an easy time getting the ultra-Dalby out of there inside the distance.

UFC Saudi Arabia Preliminary Card Odds & Prediction

The UFC pricing with OddsTrader’s top sportsbooks makes Dalby an underdog yet again, but we aren’t falling for that mistake, are we?

Truth be told, I expect Rinat to walk out of The Kingdom victorious, but it isn’t going to present a complete beatdown like the moneyline pricing may suggest. Interestingly, the odds for this fight to go the distance are at a reasonable -165, and the potential of this outcome is significantly higher than what this price point suggests.

Dalby has never been finished during his professional career. This doesn’t always match up with his defensive abilities, but there isn’t a fighter more notable when it comes to durability and toughness. Likewise, Rinat has never been stopped, and 2 of his 3 UFC bouts to date were won on the judge’s scorecards.

Supporting UFC Saudi Arabia Facts

  • Dalby has never been stopped inside the distance.
  • Rinat has never been stopped inside the distance.
  • Dalby has gone the distance in 9 of his 12 UFC bouts.
  • Rinat has gone the distance in 2 of his 3 UFC bouts.

UFC Pick: Fakhretdinov/Dalby – Fight Goes the Distance (-165) [1.65u returns 1u profit] at Bet365


Muin Gafurov vs. Kyung Ho Kang

UFC Saudi Arabia Bantamweight Preliminary Bout

Saturday, June 22, 2024 – 12:00 PM ET at Kingdom Arena


Muin Gafurov

Muin Gafurov has been 0-2 since joining the UFC one year ago, and his ability to let bettors down is nothing new. However, this hasn’t stopped oddsmakers from placing him as a betting favorite this weekend, and he’s prime for another fraud check.

  • Gafurov Pro Record: 18-6
  • Gafurov KO/TKO Wins: 10
  • Gafurov Submission Wins: 7

Kyung Ho Kang

Having just 13 pro bouts for the UFC in eleven years, Kyung Ho Kang could’ve benefited if Korean military service didn’t stunt his octagon activity. That said, he presents a well-versed MMA skill set with a level of durability that’s seen him survive all of his professional contests since 2011.

  • Kang Pro Record: 19-10
  • Kang KO/TKO Wins: 2
  • Kang Submission Wins: 12

Fight Breakdown

Regarding the underdog position at UFC Saudi Arabia, it’s difficult to argue against Kyung Ho Kang, which is one of the intriguing prices.

Gafurov throws bombs and mixes in the occasional takedown. He lacks a three-round cardio, is often undersized, and doesn’t present a desirable technicality in his fighting abilities.

Kang will be taller and have a higher output in this specific matchup. With a significant size advantage, those highlighted attributes will benefit him heavily. Moreover, we’ve watched Gafurov fade in the later stages of his contests, an area where Kang has thrived in the past.

UFC Saudi Arabia Preliminary Card Odds & Prediction

The UFC odds place a +145 underdog price on Kang, and the odds cannot be ignored.

Do not doubt “Mr. Perfect,” especially against an opponent in Gafurov who’ll struggle without the top control. Kang has a great get-up game; his frame will be significantly longer, and he has nice one-twos at range with great footwork and jabs. Not forgetting the BJJ brown belt in his pocket and the durability that’s often taken heavy shots and survived to tell the tale.

Gafurov has gone the distance six times during his career, and he’s lost five of those contests because his low output and fading cardio just isn’t good enough in the judge’s eyes. Can we bank on him finishing Kang, who hasn’t been finished in 13 years, this weekend? Certainly not, so a Kang victory at plus-money is a no-brainer, in my opinion.

UFC Pick: Kyung Ho Kang ML (+145) [1u returns 1.45u profit] at Caesars Sportsbook

*The line and/or odds referenced in this article might have changed since the content was published. For the latest information on line movements, visit OddsTrader’s free betting odds tool.

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