UFC Fight Island 6: Ortega vs Korean Zombie – 10.17.2020 – Staff Predictions, Picks, and DFS Analysis (FREE)

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Hello Daily Play Action! Welcome to our collaborative coverage UFC Fight Island 6: Ortega vs Korean Zombie. The UFC has returned to Fight Island in Abu Dhabi and we have another great card wire-to-wire on ESPN+ this weekend. Our analysis will include a pick for every bout from Anthony Marro, Nicholas Marro and GB. We also feature write-ups that will provide consideration for building lineups on both FanDuel and DraftKings.

When building your lineups here are a few things to consider. Pricing differs for most fighters making some better value on one site over the other. Scoring is important as well. On FanDuel a first-round finish scores 5x the points as a decision, where on DraftKings it scores 3x as many. Grappling is also scored drastically different as FanDuel awards points for takedown defense and submission attempts. DraftKings neglects those two stats and instead values advances (such as to half guard, to mount…) and reversals. Lastly, you will only want to take two fighters from the same fight if you think it goes into the late rounds and expect both to reach value.

As coverage continues, we will keep our Daily Play Action records up to date. Be sure to check out our reasoning though as records will not reflect confidence, we will be picking all fights regardless of if we are betting on them. If you are in search of a good website to tail any of our picks, I highly recommend using Bovada for their user-friendly format and awesome deposit bonuses!

Nick: 173-92-4    Anthony: 161-104-4    GB: 156-109-4

Fight odds are as listed from Bovada and last updated 10:30 AM EST 10-17-2020

Preliminary Card- Starts 4:00pm EST

Said Nurmagomedov -400 (DK $9200, FD $21) vs Mark Striegl +300 (DK $7000, FD $9)

  • Anthony: Our card begins in the bantamweight division for a fight between Said Nurmagomedov and Mark Striegl. The odds a bit wide on this one but is in not uncommon to see prospects like Nurmagomedov get steamed up by public money and still win. He should be able to excel in this bout as long as he is elusive enough in scrambles with Striegl. This is probably the most talented grappler that Nurmagomedov has faced and thus there is a little concern over grappling exchanges. However, I believe that Nurmagomedov is going to stuff takedowns and stay in control for the majority of this fight. He has the better striking of the two and I see him winning by decision to open the card. Striegl poses a decent threat to him in this fight and thus he is worth taking a shot on at the current odds if you like him. Said Nurmagomedov by Decision
  • Nick: Said Nurmagomedov is coming off a loss to Raoni Barcellos, but it’s tough to get too down on him for that one. He is primarily a striker, but against a world class grappler in Barcellos he was never really able to keep the fight on the feet long enough to string anything together. Nurmagomedov is a decent grappler in his own right, but the bigger and stronger Barcellos did not leave him any openings. This was Nurmagomedov’s only loss since 2014, and this feels like a good spot for him to get back into the win column. Mark Striegl is making his UFC debut here. He’s fairly experienced for a debutant, but he is a one-dimensional grappler. His takedown entries are decent, but Nurmagomedov is more advanced than anyone he’s faced before. I expect Streigl to try and take this fight to the mat, as he’s going to be outclassed by Nurmagomedov on the feet. The line may be a bit too wide here as Numagomedov is still developing, but it’s tough to expect him to fall in this spot. As long as he can avoid getting caught in a submission, this is his fight to lose. He’s a bit over-priced for DFS purposes, but he’s the clear pick here. Said Nurmagomedov by Decision
  • GB: Mark Striegl by Round Two Submission

Maxim Grishin -340 (DK $9100, FD $20) vs Gadzhimurad Antigulov +260 (DK $7100, FD $10)

  • Anthony: Up next is an odd fight at light heavyweight between Maxm Grishin and Gadzhimurad Antigulov. Grishin is moving down from heavyweight for this fight and is a massive favorite, for good reason. Antigulov has looked very bad over his last three fights being finished in the first round of each. He is a very aggressive fighter and we rarely see the second round in his fights. I attribute that to his age which is suspiciously listed at 33 even though he looks much older in the octagon. I say it is suspect because if he were lying about it, he could have picked a less conspicuous date than the first of January. Regardless, I do not think his body is going to hold up in this fight. Grishin is excellent from range and this feels like a match that he should absolutely dominate. Play him on both site and feel free to bet the under. Maxim Grishin by Round One KO
  • Nick: Antigulov’s gas tank is the big question in this one. He almost always seems to fade in the first round. His average fight time sits just north of two minute. This won’t be Grishin’s UFC debut, but it will be his debut at light heavyweight. He fought Marcin Tybura at heavyweight on short notice back in July. He couldn’t overcome Tybura’s size advantage in that one, but he did show solid takedown defense and a legitimate chin. Grishin is primarily a kickboxer, throwing really fast combos for someone his size. However, he prefers to rely on his power and accuracy rather than racking up volume. He does a good job mixing in leg kicks to keep his opponents at distance, which will certainly be helpful here against the aggressive style of Antigulov. Given the way most of Antigulov’s fights have gone, this is a good fight to target for DFS purposes. I mostly want to be on the Grishin side. However, it’s smart to hedge with a bit of Antigulov because if he does win, it’s most likely going to come via early stoppage. Don’t blink or you could miss this one. I believe that Grishin will survive the grappling attack and win this one using his power. Maxim Grishin by Round One KO
  • GB: Maxim Grishin by Round One KO

Jamie Mullarkey -135 (DK $8300, FD $15) vs Fares Ziam +105 (DK $7900, FD $15)

  • Anthony: This is an intriguing lightweight fight between Jaime Mullarkey and Fares Ziam. I liked what I saw from Mullarkey in his last fight against Brad Ridell. I believe he has a lot more polished arsenal than that of Ziam and if he finds his range he should excel in this spot. Ziam has some good striking but throwing the low kick against Mullarkey will leave him exposed to a lot of clean counters. Mullarkey can wrestle in this spot too and I believe that will be what tilts this into his favor. I was a bit surprised seeing how small he looked next to Ziam, but a more compact frame gives him the power advantage needed to score his takedowns. It is a very tough fight to call but I lean the way of Mullarkey who is priced fairly soft. Jamie Mullarkey by Round Two KO
  • Nick: This is a low-level match-up and likely one of the closest fights on the card. Mullarkey went to war with Brad Riddell in his last fight. He wore a lot more damage than Riddell did in that one, but he showed serious durability and an improvement in his counterstriking that we’d never really seen from him before. He was effective in most grappling exchanges and while he was swept and reversed at times, he did a good job staying out of serious trouble and getting back to his feet when he needed to.
    Ziam is primarily a kickboxer and he generally does a good job utilizing leg kicks to keep his opponents at a distance. In his last fight he was pushed against the cage for almost a full fifteen minutes but did do a good job stuffing takedown. While Ziam’s cardio did seem to hold up in that one, he was ultimately outclassed by Don Madge wherever the fight went. Ziam is going to be the taller fighter here, but Mullarkey is likely the stronger of the two. Mullarkey’s grappling leaves a lot to be desired, but his wrestling is developed enough to score a takedown or two on Ziam and work him from threre. I’d be even more confident in Mullarkey here if there wasn’t such a size discrepancy. This could make things tough on Mullarkey whenever he shoots, but I see him as a relentless enough fighter to eventually find the positions he needs. My confidence level is fairly low but I’m siding with Mullarkey here. Jamie Mullarkey by Decision
  • GB: Jamie Mullarkey by Decision

Jun Yong Park -280 (DK $8800, FD $17) vs John Phillips +220 (DK $7400, FD $13)

  • Anthony: Next on the card is a lightweight bout between John Phillips and Jun Yong Park. You likely recognize Phillips from Khamzat Chimaev’s UFC debut in July of this year. He got beaten to a pulp in that fight and is already jumping back into the cage to face a dangerous opponent. Jun Yong Park is the far superior martial artist to Phillips. While Phillips does have excellent power, he is an incredibly low volume striker that looks like a fish out of water on the mat. I do not anticipate a lot of takedowns from Park in this fight, but he can certainly bring the fight to the ground when needed. He will likely have no problem landing the cleaner and higher volume strikes while standing. Phillips has knockout potential and could certainly win this one by knockout, but I believe Park will fight defensively enough to survive fifteen minutes. Jun Yong Park by Decision
  • Nick: Phillips was absolutely dominated by Khamazat Chimaev in his last fight. He managed to survive the first round, but he was manhandled for the entirety of the fight and could be out of a job if he loses today. While he never really showed it last time out, Phillips is an efficient striker with a lot more power than his frame would indicate. Formally known as “The White Mike Tyson” Phillips has a powerful left hand, fairly crisp boxing and power in his overhands as well as his hooks. That being said, this is really all he has to lean on. His grappling is as bad as anyone on the roster and once he’s on his back he almost never gets back to his feet. Jun Young Park doesn’t have any one standout skill, but he’s an intelligent fighter with above average ability both grappling and on the feet. He’s never been knocked out, which is notable here as Phillips’ one clear path to victory is by way of KO. Park’s grappling isn’t anything outstanding, but it should be enough to take advantage of Phillips’ weaknesses in this spot. Park has solid trip and sweep takedowns which will suffice against the 11 percent takedown defense of Phillips. Phillips’ knockout power makes him a live dog, but I don’t really see it happening for him here. Park should be able to take this fight to the mat and eventually find Phillips’ neck for the choke. Jun Yong Park by Round Two Submission
  • GB: Jun Yong Park by Round Two KO

Gillian Robertson -205 (DK $8700, FD $18) vs Poliana Botelho +165 (DK $7500, FD $12)

  • Anthony: The first women’s bout of the night takes place at flyweight between Poliana Botelho and Gillian Robertson. The much more active of these two fighters is Robertson who is coming off a huge submission win in June of this year. She looks a lot more polished than she ever has been but facing Botelho here is going to be a tough task. The Brazilian has a clear striking advantage and I believe that she will find success for as long as she is able to keep this fight standing. Her size and reach advantage will play a major factor here. Not to mention although she has primarily fought at strawweight, her takedown defense has been extremely impressive thus far. I am backing Botelho here, on a card where there are very few underdogs you can trust. Poliana Botelho by Decision
  • Nick: This is your classic striker vs. grappler match-up. Botelho has crisp kickboxing and she’s undoubtedly going to beat up Robertson on the feet here. On the other hand Robertson has outstanding BJJ and she’s not shy about shooting for takedowns early and often. Botelho often throws punches off her lead leg, which could potentially leave her vulnerable to a Robertson takedown here. Even if it doesn’t, Robertson is likely going to be relentless with her takedowns and eventually drag this fight to the mat. Once it is there, it should only be a matter of time before she finds the submission. Poliana Botelho used to fight at 115 and Robertson is one of the bigger girls at 125 pounds. Knowing this, it’s safe to say Robertson has the strength advantage here as well. If Botelho can somehow keep this fight on the feet, she could pull this one out. I really don’t see it happening though. Gillian Robertson by Round One Submission
  • GB: Gillian Robertson by Decision

Mateusz Gamrot -310 (DK $8900, FD $18) vs Guram Kutateladze +240 (DK $7300, FD $11)

  • Anthony: The featured prelim is a very exciting lightweight bout between Mateusz Gamrot and Guram Kutateladze. I am excited to see what Gamrot brings to the UFC as he was a double champion in KSW. Being accustomed to five round fights should make three rounds a walk in the park for him here. If Kutaladze were to win it would likely be early in the fight, but Gamrot has an excellent chin and can eat a few clean shots against him. As the fight clock begins to tick, I anticipate that Gamrot will take over and grind out an overwhelming decision. He has outstanding grappling and we will likely see him score a handful of takedowns in this bout. Kutateladze is certainley live in this fight but I am confident enough to bet on Gamrot straight, even at inflated odds. Both are viable options on DraftKings and FanDuel, but I am confident that Gamrot will be the victor this evening. Mateusz Gamrot by Decision
  • Nick: We have two extremely exciting fighters making their UFC debuts here. Mateusz Gamrot has a ton of hype coming into this one. He’s an outstanding chain grappler with a wide range of takedowns, has ridiculous cardio and never lost a fight at any level. He’s shown a serious chin on the feet and while he doesn’t really have true knockout power, he lands meaningful strikes that force his opponents to respect him no matter where the fight goes. Guram Kutateladze trains with Khamazat Chimaev. He is comfortable in the clinch, but his greatest strength is his high kicks in space. He strings together effective combos and puts a lot of power behind all of his shots. His takedown defense is questionable at best, but he has decent scrambling ability and seems to have the ability to win by submission off his back as well. Gamrot is rightfully favored here, but the line definitely feels a lot wider than it should be. As good as Gamrot has looked in KSW, this one of the more gifted strikers he’s ever faced. I am backing the favorite here as I expect he should be able to score the takedowns he needs to control position for the majority of three rounds. Both of these guys likely have promising careers ahead of them, but Gamrot is definitely further along in his development. Mateusz Gamrot by Decision
  • GB: Mateusz Gamrot by Round One KO

Main Card- Starts 7:00pm EST

Thomas Almeida -140 (DK $8000, FD $17) vs Jonathan Martinez +110 (DK $8200, FD $16)

  • Anthony: The main card opens with the toughest fight to pick, a featherweight bout between Thomas Almeida and Jonathan Martinez. It feels like everybody is picking Almeida in this spot, yet the line had stayed closer than most on this card. I have just found myself unable to pull the trigger on him this week. He enters on a two-year layoff while Martinez has already fought twice in 2020. The other issue I have in this fight is the weight at which it is being contested. You can tell by looking at Almeida he belongs at bantamweight and adding ten pounds is not an advantage for him. On the other hand, Martinez struggled to make 135 pounds in his last bout and will benefit immensely from this. While I believe this is very competitive, I think the poor striking defense of Almeida will be his downfall tonight. I will side with the underdog here but this one feels very sketchy on both sides. Jonathan Martinez by Round Three KO
  • Nick: Almeida hasn’t fought since January of 2018, but before his long layoff he was fighting against the absolute best of the bantamweight division. At one point, he was of the more highly touted prospects in the UFC and some even felt could he could compete for the title. Meanwhile, Martinez has seen his stock rise considerably over his last few fights. He’s coming off a nice knockout win over Frankie Saenz and while he’s yet to face anyone on Almeida’s level, he has shown a high fight IQ and a lot of upside in terms of his career trajectory. Martinez is coming in on short notice as a late replacement for Alejandro Perez. He’s a well-rounded fighter, but there’s no part of his game more advanced than that of Almeida. The line is close on this one, but I think that’s mostly because we haven’t seen Almeida fight in so long. He recently changed camps to Xtreme Couture, and in listening to interviews it seems like he’s been training and improving for the majority of his layoff. Martinez is a scrappy fighter with a promising future, but this is likely too much too soon for him, especially on short notice. Thomas Almeida by Round Two KO
  • GB: Thomas Almeida by Round Two KO

James Krause -140 (DK $8500, FD $17) vs Claudio Silva +110 (DK $7700, FD $13)

  • Anthony: Up next is a fun fight at welterweight between Claudio Silva and James Krause. This is a short notice fight for Krause who is filling in for Muslim Salikhov. This is more or less the specialty of Krause though, as he is always ready to step in when called upon. In his most recent fight against Trevin Giles he nearly won on just a single day’s notice. On the other hand is an extremely inactive Silva, with just four total fights in the past six years. While some guys have the death touch standing with huge power in their fists, Silva has it on the mat with his spectacular jiu jitsu. I do trust Krause a lot though as he is no slouch grappling. He should be able to cruise in all of this fight’s striking exchanges. It is just a question of whether or not he can survive if taken down. Krause may be volatile in this spot but he is an absolute steal at this price and betting line. I think that he gets the job done here this evening. James Krause by Decision
  • Nick: Krause is the betting favorite here, but the closer this line gets the more correct I think it actually is. This is one of the tightest fights on the card and one you’ll likely want exposure to both sides building your DFS line-ups. While it’s true he hasn’t fought since 2019, Silva hasn’t lost in over a decade. He’s likely on the downturn of his career at 38 years old, but his BJJ is still amongst the best the UFC has at welterweight. Krause lost a close split decision in his last fight against Trevin Giles but would otherwise be on a seven fight win streak of his own. He took that fight on just one day notice and up a weight-class at 185 pounds, but fought competitively and arguably won. He is a well-rounded fighter win an extremely high Fight IQ, and generally does a good job capitalizing on his opponent’s weaknesses while avoiding their strengths. Silva has outstanding BJJ, so I expect Krause to keep this fight on the feet as much as possible. While Krause is the better striker, he doesn’t really have the type of power it would take to stop Silva in this spot. Krause has more paths to victory here, but none of them are as clear as Silva’s via submission. It may take a few tries, but I expect Silva to eventually capitalize and work this fight to the mat. It may not come easy, but I think he eventually finds Krause’s neck and keeps his winning streak alive. Claudio Silva by Round Three Submission.
  • GB: Claudio Silva by Decision

Jimmy Crute -310 (DK $9000, FD $19) vs Modestas Bukauskas +240 (DK $7200, FD $10)

  • Anthony: This is a tough light heavyweight bout to call between Modestas Bukauskas and Jimmy Crute. We recently saw Bukauskas score a big knockout in his July debut by raining down elbows on his opponent as he was shooting for a takedown. I am a bit nervous about this pick because a similar thing could happen here, but it is far more likely that Crute can successfully bring Bukauskas to the mat. When it comes to grappling, there are not many in this division as good as Crute. It is very likely that while they are both dry, he is able to lock up a submission victory. If not though, I trust Crute to rinse and repeat with the takedowns and win either by decision or by ground and pound. I would have exposure to both guys when building my DFS lineups though as Bukauskas certainly has knockout power. Jimmy Crute by Round One Submission
  • Nick: Bukauskas is a powerful striker with a massive frame for a light heavyweight. He’s 6’3 with a 78 inch reach and he fights even longer than that, keeping a wide stance while striking or defending against takedowns. He is a great striker but has trouble getting back to his feet once he’s grounded. While I like Bukauskas’ general upside, this is a really bad match-up for him. Crute is heavily favored here and rightfully so. He’s an outstanding grappler with excellent jiu jitsu, and well-versed enough on the feet to hang with most of the strikers in this division. Crute has a better than 80 percent takedown accuracy and has outstanding offensive grappling ability as of late. Two of his last three victories came by way of submission. I expect him to shoot on Bukauskas early, taking this fight to the mat where he’s most comfortable. Besides his size and power, Bukauskas’ one potential advantage here is his cardio. Crute is often so aggressive that he gasses out. If Bukauskas can survive the early rush, he could pull out a late knockout in this spot. However, I see Crute scoring the early takedown and ending this one early. Jimmy Crute by Round One Submission
  • GB: Modestas Bukauskas by Round One KO

Jessica Andrade -165 (DK $8400, FD $16) vs Katlyn Chookagian +135 (DK $7800, FD $15)

  • Anthony: This fight slid into the co-main event slot after a cancellation but should still be a good one as Jessica Andrade faces Katlyn Chookagian at flyweight. I really like Andrade in this fight coming off her most recent loss to Rose Namajunas. She only has losses against the best fighters in women’s MMA and her power will certainly still stun opponents at 125 the same as it did at 115 and 135 pounds. I think if this fight were to stay standing, it would be extremely easy for Andrade to pour on the volume and land the more damaging strikes than Chookagian. However, as a bonus I anticipate we see Andrade mixing in her wrestling and working Chookagian on the mat as well. There is really no threat of Chookagian winning inside the distance and it is tough to imagine her surviving a full fifteen against Andrade. Look for a stoppage by the Brazilian in this one, whether that be by knockout or perhaps a guillotine choke. Jessica Andrade by Round Two KO
  • Nick: Andrade is definitely the more accomplished fighter here, but there are a lot of questions about how she’ll look against a much taller fighter in Chookagian. Chookagian has an eight inch advantage in terms of height. Her reach advantage is only listed as four inches, but in seeing these girls faceoff it definitely looks like it could be even greater than that. Andrade will be the more powerful striker in this one. Her only recent losses have come against champions or former champions, all of whom are amongst the best strikers in women’s MMA history. While Chookagian is a decent boxer in her own right, this feels like a massive step up for her and I’m not sure the size advantage will be enough to keep Andrade at bay. I don’t think Chookagian will be able to score takedowns on the shorter and stronger Andrade here either. When this fight is on the feet, she’ll likely be in trouble as soon as Andrade finds her distance. Chookagian throws a lot of volume, but her strikes are fairly inaccurate and they usually don’t come with much power. Additionally, it wouldn’t shock me if we saw Andrade pursue a takedown or two of her own. She may be small, but she’s extremely powerful. I also don’t like that Chookagian has been discussing retirement in interviews, even if she insists that it’s still a while away. I’ll have some exposure to Chookagian in DFS but this feels like Andrade’s fight to lose. Jessica Andrade by Decision.
  • GB: Jessica Andrade by Round Three KO

The Korean Zombie -190 (DK $8600, FD $20) vs Brian Ortega +155 (DK $7600, FD $19)

  • Anthony: Our main event this evening is an absolute banger as The Korean Zombie Chan Sung Jung will fight Brian Ortega in a featherweight title eliminator. The winner of this fight will likely challenge Alexander Volkanovski for his belt next year. By far the largest narrative coming into this fight is the two-year layoff of Ortega. He took a beating against Max Holloway and now returns, but we really cannot be sure how much he has improved over that break. He is one of the most dangerous grapplers in the world if he can get his opponents’ neck. However, he lacks the traditional takedowns that I believe he will need to win by submission tonight. The Korean Zombie has shown good takedown defense while also boasting some of the best boxing and power at 145 pounds. He is one of the most dangerous fighters on the UFC roster and I think he will be able to win inside the distance with ease tonight as long as he fights smart. In the clinch I believe he will dominate and at range I can already see him picking apart Ortega with counters for as long as this one lasts. His price tag makes him a steal on both sites, and I am confident betting him here even as a sizable favorite. The Korean Zombie by Round Two KO
  • Nick: This is the first time we’ve seen Ortega since he was totally dominated by Max Holloway in 2018. Known as a slow starter, Ortega tried to come out aggressive against Holloway and ultimately ended up paying for it as he was totally embarrassed on the feet. Holloway landed 290 significant strikes in that one, bashing Ortega’s title hopes and temporarily removing him from relevance. While Ortega clearly struggled in that fight, he never really had a chance to lean on his strengths. As a blackbelt under Rener Gracie, Ortega has extremely advanced jiu jitsu and offensive grappling. We’ve seen him score standing guillotines against the best of this division and while he has made serious improvements in his striking over the years, there’s no denying that his offensive grappling remains his most effective weapon. The Korean Zombie, is an extremely well-rounded mixed martial artist. He’s primarily a striker, but he’s also a blackbelt in BJJ with eight professional victories coming by way of submission. His clearest path to victory tonight is to keep this fight standing as long as possible. Ever since his late knockout loss to Yair Rodriguez, Jung has shown massive improvement in his head-movement and striking defense. He’s no longer the kill or be killed fighter he was known as in his ascension to stardom. Instead, he’s fighting more intelligently and looking better than ever before as a result. Ortega is a decent striker and I expect him to show improvement in this spot. He should be able to hang on the feet for a while, but he’ll need to find a submission here if he’s going to pull this one out. While the path for Ortega is clear, Chan Sung Jung has a excellent takedown defense and he has never been submitted before. I see Jung’s striking advantage even larger than Ortega’s grappling advantage in this spot. This should start as a close fight, but I see The Korean Zombie countering effectively and landing the more damaging shots. Ortega’s submission threat makes him a worthy hedge play for DFS purposes, but I’m siding with the favorite to win. I wouldn’t be shocked if this one hit the scorecards, but I think we see a knockout here. The Korean Zombie by Round Two KO
  • GB: The Korean Zombie by Round Three KO

*Anthony, Nick and GB play on both FanDuel and DraftKings, and although they express their opinions, they may also implement other plays and strategies without notice