The Runner Sports

UFC 211 DraftKings Lineup

UFC 211 is shaping up to be a spectacular night of fights. Fourteen fights over a projected eight hour broadcast. It would be lunacy not to throw a few lineups out there hoping to hit a big prize pot. The star power rounding out the prelim and main event cards is undeniable. The fighters with the most knockout potential and finish ability should look to be present in your lineups. There are some intriguing matchups that are going to be tough to predict. I believe I have the lineup that can give players the right kind of exposure to fighters with finish capabilities that will not be owned by everyone playing DraftKings on Saturday night.

1. Jessica Andrade $7,400

Jessica started her UFC career as 135 lb bantamweight and was throwing girls around effortlessly. The move to 115 lb has been a good one for her. Joanna Jedrzejczyk is a dominant champion with great takedown defense against strawweights. The X factor in this fight will be Andrade’s ability to impose her will on Joanna. Jessica is improving in the striking game but will still be in a deficit against Joanna in that department. I think that Andrade will be able to strike her way into position to take Joanna down. Here is where the fight will be won for Andrade. I think this will be the first fight where we see a fighter takedown and keep Joanna on her back for long stretches of time. Joanna will fall short of landing 100 significant strikes in this fight en route to her first loss in the UFC. I am confident most DraftKings players will not have her in their lineup making Jessica Andrade a solid sleeper pick who can pull off the upset.

2. Gadzhimurad Antigulov $9,400

Antigulov takes on Joachim Christensen in a light heavyweight scrap to kick off prelim action. This fight should be somewhat cut and dry if you apply MMA math to the equation. Christensen was submitted by Henrique da Silva and Antigulov submitted Rogerio De Lima. MMA math would suggest that Christensen is susceptible to the takedown and available for the submission. Christensen does have good striking and if he weathers the early rush by Antigulov he could survive and win the fight with his output. Antigulov has been in the octagon with better strikers than Christensen (De Lima) and was able to impose his gameplan for the victory. I believe Antigulov’s aggression can catch Christensen off guard and before he knows it, Antigulov is on his back sinking in the choke. MMA math rarely checks out, but in this instance I am in favor of it. Antigulov by second round submission.

3. Junior Dos Santos $7,700

Junior Dos Santos beat the current heavyweight champion three years ago in a five-round war. This fight was considered one of the best heavyweight fights of all time. Most DraftKings players will probably be picking the current heavyweight champ to retain his title. Causal DK players just remember Stipe knocking everyone out in his last few fights. Dos Santos has been relatively inactive since their 2014 tussle. This layoff is good for Dos Santos and conversely Stipe was dropped by Overeem in their match. Dos Santos comes in the fresher fighter with a speed advantage. Dos Santos should be able to keep Miocic on the end of his long powerful punches. That along with stuffing takedowns should be enough to edge another decision victory and become the new baddest man on the planet. Dos Santos by decision.

4. Jorge Masvidal $8,400

Jorge “Gamebred” Masvidal has to run through Brazilian python Damian Maia if he hopes to solidify a welterweight title shot this year. Everyone thinks Maia is just going to bulldoze Jorge to the ground and choke him out. I see this fight going an entirely different way. I think Maia shoots in very early and Jorge’s superior boxing will prevail. Maia will shoot for a double or single and Jorge should be able to slide away and tag Damian. I think this goes on until Maia is too tired and beaten up to get him to the ground. Jorge will finish the fight by ground and pound. Masvidal’s defensive wrestling is underrated. I think he can keep enough distance between himself and Maia. I also believe he can punish Maia on the inside. Maia looked great against a diminished Carlo Condit. Condit took too much punishment in his last fight and was a shell of his former self going into that fight with Maia. Maia doesn’t have the chin or the gas tank to hang with Jorge. Gamebred shakes off the early takedown attempts en route to late second round stoppage.

5. Yair Rodriguez $7,600

DraftKings seems to think Yair Rodriguez isn’t ready to take on the likes of Frankie Edgar. Frankly, I think $7,600 for El Pantera is a steal. Frankie Edgar is a savvy veteran no doubt. He knows how to win and impose a game plan on his opponents. Frankie Edgar is just too old, too small and doesn’t have to power to counteract the speed and variety of Yair’s attacks. The height and reach advantage for Yair will be too much to overcome for Frankie. Edgar will be blocking head kicks all night long and will not be able to counter those kicks with meaningful punches or takedowns. Edgar has good wrestling but I do not think he will be able to keep Yair on his back for long. Rodriquez has an active guard and Frankie will have to mind his Ps & Qs during scrambles. Frankie Edgar has never been finished before. Yair may be able to stop the great Frankie Edgar and solidify his featherweight title shot before the end of 2017. Edgar takes too much damage from the young hungry Mexican fighter, referee steps in late in the third round. Rodriguez by third round stoppage.

6. James Vick $9,500

This is the most expensive fighter in the DraftKings roster for UFC 211. 6-1 in the UFC, Vick is a 6’3″ lightweight. He will have at least four inches of height on Reyes. Reyes is a good fighter and rising prospect. He boasts knockout power but he hasn’t fought the caliber of fighters that would make someone think he could beat James Vick. Vick, fighting out of his home state, will have the crowd on his side. The “Texecutioner” should be able to keep the range in his favor for most of the fight. Reyes will eat a steady diet of jabs and front kicks before he gets desperate to close the distance on Vick. Vick should be able to stay out of trouble and soften Reyes up enough to get this fight to the ground or lock up a standing choke on the shorter Reyes. This fight should go the way of submission win for Vick. The price tag is high on Vick but he is a relative unknown in the UFC so his ownership should be low enough to make him a solid play in DraftKings.

 

As always fight freaks I look forward to your comments and lineup suggestions below. This weekend may see a few belts change hands, which, in my opinion, is always good for the sport. Fourteen fights and eight hours of action, we are sure to something amazing.

Chris Grabowski

Chris Grabowski

Content Contributor at The Runner Sports
Former Division 1 athlete turned combat sports enthusiast. Combat sports can be described as human problem solving with dire physical consequences.
Chris Grabowski

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