UFC Vegas 54 Blachowicz vs Rakic: Prelims Odds, Predictions, Picks

  • Japanese prospect Tatsuro Taira to make his UFC debut
  • Angela Hill looks to get back in the win column

 

UFC Vegas 54

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Featured Prelim

Viviane Araujo vs Andre Lee – Women’s Flyweight Division

The odds for this bout are provided by DraftKings Sportsbook. Click on the odds below to head to DraftKings and place a bet.

Viviane “Vivi” Araujo TALE OF THE TAPE Andre “KGB” Lee
35 Age 33
5‘4“ (163cm) Height 5‘6“ (168cm)
68.0” (173cm) Reach 69.5” (177cm)
Brazil Nation United States
Cerrado MMA Team Synergy Martial Arts Academy
10-3-0 Record 13-5-0
-105

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Odds -115

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Angela Lee is currently on a two fight winning streak and has a record of 5-3 so far within the UFC. Her recent form has been absolutely phenomenal, from the second round triangle armbar win over Antonia Shevchenko to the corner stoppage of Cynthia Calvillo between rounds two and three of their fight. Viviane Araujo has shown great form through her UFC career with wins over Roxanne Modafferi and Montana De La Rosa, however her most recent fight ended in a unanimous decision loss to Katlyn Chookagian. With all that being said, “KGB” has all the momentum on her side and will look to stay within striking distance to cruise to a decision victory.

Our Pick

Andrea Lee by judges decision (TBA)

Michael Johnson vs Alan Patrick – Lightweight Division

Michael “The Menace” Johnson TALE OF THE TAPE Alan “Nuguette” Patrick
35 Age 38
5‘10“ (178cm) Height 5‘11“ (180cm)
73.5” (187cm) Reach 74.0” (188cm)
United States Nation Brazil
Sanford MMA Team XGym
19-17-0 Record 15-3-0-1NC
-125

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Odds +105

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Despite currently being on a sorely disappointing four fight losing streak, there is no doubt that Michael Johnson is the more seasoned and experienced fighter in this matchup. He has faced the best of the best in for the majority of his UFC careers including, Khabib Nurmagomedov, Justin Gaethje, and Nate Diaz. He also boasts a first round knockout victory over Dustin “The Diamond” Poirier way back in 2016. Alan Patrick, who is undoubtedly at the tail end of his mixed martial arts career, is also on a losing streak having lost to Scott Holtzman via technical knockout in 2018 as well as a unanimous decision loss to Bobby Green more recently in 2020. While Alan Patrick might win the first round of this fight by throwing wild strikes, it’s likely he will gas himself out by the later rounds where Johnson is known to bounce back and catch a second wind. Johnson’s striking skills are notorious and could prove devastating to Alan Patrick in the final round.

Our Pick

Micheal Johnson by judges decision (TBA)

Virna Jandiroba vs Angela Hill – Women’’s Strawweight Division

Virna “Carcara” Jandiroba TALE OF THE TAPE Angela “Overkill” Hill
33 Age 37
5‘3“ (160cm) Height 5‘3“ (160cm)
64.0” (163cm) Reach 64.5” (164cm)
Brazil Nation United States
Academia Fight House Team Alliance MMA
17-3-0 Record 13-11-0
-150

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Odds +130

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Angela Hill has been very unlucky to say the least when it comes to the judges scorecards having her losing rounds which she clearly won. Her split decision losses to Claudia Gadelha, Michelle Waterson as well as Amanda Ribas unfortunately came down to poor judgment by the officials. Virna Jandiroba is also coming off a unanimous decision loss to Amanda Ribas in her last UFC outing, however the judges were right on that occasion as Jandiroba was not very active during that fight, which allowed Ribas to win convincingly. Skill for skill, Hill is the better fighter overall and definitely the more season striker out of the two. With that being said, Angela Hill should find her way cruising to a decision in this one.

Our Pick

Angela Hill by judges decision (TBA)

Tatsuro Taira vs Carlos Candelario – Flyweight Division

Tatsuro Taira TALE OF THE TAPE Carlos “The Cannon” Candelario
22 Age 30
5’7” / 170cm Height 5’8” / 173cm
67.0 / 170cm Reach 67.0 / 170cm
Japan Nation United States
The Paraestra Okinawa Team Underdog Mixed Martial Arts
10-0-0 Record 8-1-0
-220

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Odds +180

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Two fantastic Flyweight prospects go head to head in this bout, with both making their UFC debut. Tatsuro Taira is an undefeated Japanese fighter who has smashed his way through the asian regional scene with eight finishes in the first round. Carlos Candelario also won the majority of his fights in the first round however he lost his most recent fight which took place on the contender series where he suffered a split decision loss to Victor altamirano. While both fighters have a similar record, Taira is both younger and more experienced than Candelario and always aims to end fights as quickly as possible whereas Candelario is happy to have a good scrap to try and win a decision.

Our Pick

Tatsuro Taira by submission in round 1 (+400)

Nick Maximov vs Andre Petroski – Middleweight Division

Nick Maximov TALE OF THE TAPE Andre Petroski
24 Age 30
6‘0“ (183cm) Height 6‘0“ (183cm)
76.0” (193cm) Reach 73.0” (185cm)
United States Nation United States
Nick Diaz Academy Team Renzo Gracie Philly
8-0-0 Record 7-2-0
-335

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Odds +260

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Having already earned two UFC wins via judges decision, Nick Maximov has all the momentum on his side in the matchup. He’s fighting an opponent in Andre Petroski who is known for attempting several jumping guillotines in his fights which will play right into Maximov’s jiu jitsu skill set. When Nick isn’t competing in MMA he keeps himself busy by participating in grappling competitions such as submission underground.Petroski however has also bagged two UFC wins, one by knockout vs Michael Gillmore and another by arm triangle choke vs Yaozong Hu. As both fighters have similar grappling heavy skill sets, it’s likely this fight goes the distance.

Our Pick

Nick Maximov by judges decision (TBA)

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UFC Vegas 54 Information
Event UFC Vegas 54: Blachowicz vs Rakic
Location UFC Apex, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Date / Time Saturday May 14th 2022, 18:00 ET
How to watch ESPN, ESPN+

 

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Jean Marc Valente

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Jean Marc Valente is a freelance content creator and artist with a passion for MMA and an undying admiration for its athletes. This admiration led Jean Marc to starting his own MMA blog in 2019 and he has been covering combat sports over various platforms ever since. Email: [email protected]