Odds: Luke Sanders (-134) vs. Nate Maness (+110)
Nathan Maness and Luke Sanders were a late addition to the UFC Fight Night 184 card just a fortnight ago, and fans can be pleased given its potential for an explosive opening matchup.
Held at a catchweight of 140 pounds, bantamweight Sanders (13-3) will be facing a heavier-than-usual opponent in Maness (12-1), who booked a UFC debut victory on short notice just three months ago.
“Mayhem” has traded his roofing job for a career in mixed martial arts, and the 29-year-old has displayed the talents necessary to forge a future in the sport’s top promotion. Maness may be the +110 moneyline dark horse according to Borgata NJ, but his extra size should tell coming up against a bantamweight in Sanders, whose three-inch height disadvantage will come into play against a rangy opponent.
“Cool Hand” has lost three of his six UFC fights and suffered finishes in each of those: two submissions and one knockout. Maness has twice as many knockouts wins (four) on his record as he does submissions (two), but it wouldn’t be a shock if Mayhem’s team has identified the ground as the more logical route to victory in Las Vegas.
Prediction: Maness via submission