- What: UFC Vegas 73 fight card
- Co-Main Event: Edmen Shahbazyan vs. Anthony Hernandez
- Date: Saturday, May 20, 2023
- Location: UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada
- Time: Prelims (4:00 p.m. ET) Main Card (7:00 p.m. ET)
- How to Watch: ESPN+
On Saturday, May 20, the UFC is at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas for an ESPN+ fight card headlined by a strawweight matchup between top-15 ranked competitors Mackenzie Dern and Angela Hill. Before Dern and Hill face off in the headlining contest, rising middleweights Edmen Shahbazyan and Anthony Hernandez clash in the evening’s co-main event contest. Here is some background on the co-headliners before we discuss, in detail, the betting breakdown for the UFC Vegas 73 fight card.
The 29-year-old Hernandez is 10-2-0-1 as a pro. He joined the UFC in 2019 and has gone 4-2 with the promotion with three submission wins and one decision victory. His losses have come by way of submission and TKO. Hernandez is riding a three-fight winning streak and coming off a September submission victory over Marc-Andre Barriault.
The 25-year-old Shahbazyan is 12-3. He joined the UFC in 2018 and has a 5-3 record with the promotion. Three of his UFC wins have come by knockout, and he has one submission and one decision victory. Shahbazyan’s three losses, two by knockout and one decision, came in consecutive outings. However, he bounced back from those defeats with a December knockout win over Dalcha Lungiambula.
Before we look at the best bets for the co-main event of the UFC Vegas 73 card between Edmen Shahbazyan and Anthony Hernandez, check out the best bets for the UFC Vegas 73 main event between Mackenzie Dern and Angela Hill and where you can find the best odds on all the UFC fights.
UFC Vegas 73 co-main event: Edmen Shahbazyan vs. Anthony Hernandez betting picks
|To Win UFC Vegas 73 Co-Main Event|
Edmen Shahbazyan vs. Anthony Hernandez betting breakdown
Anthony Hernandez is coming off the best performance of his UFC career against Marc-Andre Barriault. Hernandez showcased heavy hands, which he used to set up his takedowns. Those takedowns resulted in Hernandez picking up nearly nine minutes of control time on his way to the submission win. Hernandez has racked up 16 takedowns in his past two fights.
With three straight losses, Edmen Shahbazyan shook things up before his most recent fight by going to a new gym. The move paid off as he picked up a victory in that fight. Shahbazyan is a talented fighter, but he has shown limited wrestling skills, and he will be tested in that department by Hernandez. Shahbazyan has better technical striking skills than Hernandez, but he will struggle on Saturday without improved wrestling. In his losses to Derek Brunson and Jack Hermansson, Shahbazyan gave up a total of seven takedowns.
Edmen Shahbazyan vs. Anthony Hernandez statistical breakdown
When it comes to striking stats, Shahbazyan and Hernandez have similar numbers. Shahbazyan lands 3.59 significant strikes per minute, which is slightly less than Hernandez’s 4.03. Meanwhile, Hernandez absorbs 3.50 significant strikes per minute to Shabazyan’s 3.87.
As for grappling, Hernandez is outstanding at landing takedowns, averaging 6.49 per 15 minutes of UFC action, which dwarfs Shahbazyan’s 2.31. As for takedown defense, Shahbazyan is at 65 percent to Hernandez’s 66. Another number that stands out for Hernandez is his 2.4 submissions per 15 minutes, which is much higher than Shahbazyan’s 0.5.
Best UFC Vegas 73 bets
Both these middleweights are coming off strong performances, and Shahbazyan and Hernandez will have confidence heading into UFC Vegas 73. However, Shahbazyan’s slow starts and lack of takedown defense worry me. Another thing to consider is that Shahbazyan’s last fight came against an opponent who had left his new gym, so his coaches were very familiar with that fighter. Shahbazyan won’t have that advantage against Hernandez.
Shahbazyan is a live underdog, and if one believes he can keep this fight standing and stop the takedowns of Hernandez, there is value in betting on him to triumph at UFC Vegas 73. However, I don’t see it ending that way. Hernandez’s takedowns and ability to score points in close will carry the day. The best bet for UFC Vegas 73 is to pick Anthony Hernandez to beat Edmen Shahbazyan via decision.
Best UFC Vegas 73 betting pick: Anthony Hernandez to beat Edmen Shahbazyan at UFC Vegas 73 via decision.
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