UFC Fight Night: Vera vs. Cruz – Perfect Proposition

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Marlon Vera celebrates after his TKO victory over Frankie Edgar during the UFC 268 event. Mike Stobe/Getty Images/AFP.

The Ultimate Fighting Championship returns to California for a highly stacked Fight Night event. The UFC odds are now available for us to delve into some perfect UFC expert props for the event headlined by a bantamweight contenders’ bout between Marlon Vera and Dominick Cruz.

Marlon Vera vs. Dominick Cruz

UFC Bantamweight Main Event Bout

Saturday, August 13, 2022 – 07:00 PM EDT at Pechanga Arena

Fighters Analysis

Dominick Cruz

Former two-time bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz (24-3-0) has been a prominent name at 135lbs since the division's inception (2011) following the demise of WEC.

He's undoubtedly reaching the latter stage of his career, but two consecutive wins over dangerous fighters in Casey Kenney and Pedro Munhoz prove there's still some fight in the old dog.

Marlon Vera

Marlon Vera (21-7-1) is a vicious bantamweight who's displayed an ability to finish fights and leave no questions during his rise to the top.

Championship gold is within reach, and a significant victory of the former champ this weekend could position the Ecuadorian native as the next title challenger.


Vera vs. Cruz: Fight Breakdown

For his recent successes versus Rob Font and Frankie Edgar, Vera did lose a lot of those minutes. Especially in the Edgar contest, where he lost every second of the fight until a round three front kick stoppage earned him a victory.

This isn't a knock-on Vera, but I'm hesitant about his chances of emulating that knockout ability when facing Cruz's elusive footwork and head movement.

Cruz has made a career of being difficult to catch. One knockout loss in a 17-year professional MMA career is a testament to this stance. He additionally boasts a level of grappling that can disengage a stand-up war and potentially give him an edge through all five rounds.


Vera vs. Cruz: Odds Analysis

The available UFC odds at the top-rated sportsbooks favor the younger fighter in Vera, but we can't ignore the difficulty of predicting this contest.

In my opinion, the moneyline odds are disrespectful to Cruz, and although Vera owns the tools to end a fight, I expect this weekend's main event to finish inside the distance.

UFC Pick: Fight Goes the Distance (-165) [1.65u returns 1u profit] at BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review)

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Fight Goes the Distance (-165)
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Devin Clark vs. Azamat Murzakanov

UFC Light Heavyweight Main Card Bout

Saturday, August 13, 2022 - 07:00 PM EDT at Pechanga Arena

Fighters Analysis

Devin Clark

When Devin Clark (13-6-0) steps into the octagon, we know exactly what we're going to get, a strong wrestler who hasn't delivered much from a striking aspect since his arrival to the UFC in 2016.

A TKO stoppage versus William Knight defied that sentiment in Clark's previous bout. However, we shouldn't expect this to become a trend in the American's career.

Azamat Murzakanov

Azamat Murzakanov (11-0-0) has remained undefeated since making his professional debut in 2010. While he's undoubtedly lacked in appearances and experience, he does present an elite-level striking offense alongside a fight-ending level of power.


Clark vs. Murzakanov: Fight Breakdown

Defending takedowns will be the M.O. for the Russian, as we should expect a wrestling gameplan to play out on Clark's behalf.

It won't be Murzakanov's first rodeo in a striker versus grappler matchup, but we don't have significant footage of his grappling defense to give a clear opinion.

With that said, punching power that stems into the later rounds is a considerable advantage to own as a fighter, and Murzakanov proved he holds this with a third-round knockout in his previous bout.


Clark vs. Murzakanov: Odds Analysis

The available UFC odds with Bookmakers Review favor Murzakanov, but I prefer the value on this fight ending before the end of the third round.

I predict the Russian will completely outclass Clark in the stand-up exchanges, light movement, and power will confuse the underdog until an eventual knockout occurs.

UFC Pick: Under 2 ½ Rounds (-130) [1.30u returns 1u profit] at BetOnline

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UFC Main Card and Odds

*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.