It almost feels like a quiet weekend in the UFC after stops in London, Salt Lake City and Nashville. However, it’ll be far from that, especially in the main event when a pair of ranked Brazilian welterweights square off inside the UFC APEX Saturday night at UFC Fight Night: Luque vs. Dos Anjos. Out of the game for over a year, Vicente Luque hops back in the Octagon looking to end a two-fight losing streak as an even-money underdog on the UFC betting line. It’s been just over two years since Luque last won a fight with a submission of Michael Chiesa on August 7, 2021 at UFC 265.
While there are no high-profile fights on the card there’s sure to be plenty of action. The headliner between top 15 contenders could easily vault the winner into the title discussion. Rafael Dos Anjos is a former lightweight champ who has bounced between divisions, losing to Colby Covington in 2018 for the interim welterweight belt. Both fighters have a long history in MMA with a combined 77 fights with 52 of those bouts taking place inside the Octagon. Having won three of his last four fights, Dos Anjos was positioned as a -130 favorite at UFC betting sites.
The main event is one of six fights on the main card with an additional seven bouts in the prelim round. Bet on UFC online at BetRivers sportsbook with odds for every fight on the ticket. The action takes place on Saturday, August 12, 2023 from the UFC APEX in Las Vegas, NV. Prelims start at 4 p.m. ET with the main card scheduled for 7 p.m. ET. All fights will air on ESPN and ESPN+.
UFC Fight Night: Luque vs. Dos Anjos Main Card Odds
Vicente Luque +100 vs. Rafael Dos Anjos -130
Cub Swanson +172 vs. Hakeem Dawodu -220
Chris Daukaus +150 vs. Khalil Rountree -190
Polyana Viana +150 vs. Iasmin Lucindo -190
Tafon Nchukwi -139 vs. AJ Dobson +109
Jamie Pickett+286 vs. Josh Fremd -390
It doesn’t matter that Luque ( 21-9-1, 11 KOs, 8 SUBs ) hasn’t fought in a year and hasn’t won in two years UFC betting sites have this pegged as a close bout with Luque paying even money as the underdog. That’s probably because his body of work over a long career speaks for itself. Prior to his current two-fight slide, ‘The Silent Assassin’ won four straight all by stoppage and he certainly earned his nickname. Of his 14 UFC wins all but one came via stoppage. His only win that went to the judges took place four years ago with a split decision over Mike Perry.
There’s a good chance this fight doesn’t make it to the scorecards. Of Luque’s 19 UFC fights only five were decided by the judges. The long layoff has to be a concern for bettors, especially since Luque lost his previous two fights. I’m not sure what’s worse, taking a fight on short notice like Rob Font did last week, and we saw what happened, or not facing live action for a year. For Luque the down time is likely a blessing. He’s only 31 but has accumulated a lot of miles on his frame with 31 career fights.
Luque may have been feeling the effects in his last two fights. In April 2022 his four-fight win streak and a stretch of 10 wins in 11 bouts ended with a unanimous decision setback to Belal Muhammad, a guy he KO’d in the first round just a few years earlier. Then last August Luque was dropped by Geoff Neal suffering the first knockout loss of his career while dropping consecutive fights for the first time.
The soon-to-be 39 year old Dos Anjos ( 32-14, 5 KOs, 11 SUBs ) is a grizzled veteran compared to Luque and just about everyone else in the UFC. If his most recent fight is any indication he’s not slowing down. The former lightweight champ went 4-4 after moving up a class in 2017. RDA dropped back down beating Paul Felder and Renato Moicano by decision before suffering a KO loss to Rafael Fizief 13 months ago. Dos Anjos returned to the 170 last December submitting Bryan Barberena with a neck crank in the second round.
RDA’s 21-12 record inside the Octagon is a bit misleading and doesn’t show just how good he is. His list of opponents represents a who’s who in the UFC with Dos Anjos sharing the cage with seven former champions and a laundry list of top 15 contenders over his two division foray. And he’s been successful displaying the ability to adapt to different styles. He’s an aggressive fighter who throws a lot of punches with most of them hitting their mark. RDA will attack from the opening bell looking to take advantage of an opponent who hasn’t fought in a year. That makes Dos Anjos a good UFC bet to win on Saturday.
UFC Prediction: Rafael Dos Anjos -130 / Decision
Check out the latest UFC betting odds at BetRivers.