UFC: UFC 295: Alex Pereira, Tom Aspinall favored in co-main events

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UFC 295 will be headlined by co-main events at Madison Square Garden on Saturday night.

The main card includes five fights, with Alex Pereira and Jiri Prochazka slated to be the final two to step into the octagon in a light heavyweight title fight.

Prochazka (29-3-1 MMA, 3-0 UFC) of Czechia is a former UFC light heavyweight champion with 25 knockouts on his resume. The 31-year-old’s most recent fight was a win by submission over Glover Teixeira in June of 2022.

Pereira, 36, last fought in July, with the former middleweight champion from Brazil scoring a win by split decision over Jan Blachowicz.

Pereira (8-2-0 MMA, UFC) is the -125 favorite at BetMGM, where he has been backed by 51 percent of the fight bets and 57 percent of the money to beat Prochazka (+105)

The co-main event features an intriguing heavyweight fight between Tom Aspinall and Sergei Pavlovich

Pavlovich enters with an 18-1 record, including 6-1 in the UFC. The 31-year-old Russian is coming off a knockout win over Curtis Blaydes in April. After opening at +105, Pavlovich’s odds have shifted to -105 as he has been backed by 73 percent of the bets.

Aspinall (13-3, 6-1) remains the slight favorite at -115. The 30-year-old, a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt, won by TKO over Marcin Tybura in July for his 10th KO victory. It was also the 12th career first-round stoppage for England’s Aspinall, who needed little over a minute to finish off Tybura.

Other Main Card Fights:
–Jessica Andrade (24-12, 15-10) vs. Mackenzie Dern (13-3, 8-3): Andrade is the former strawweight champion, but she enters UFC 295 on a three-fight skid. Dern is coming off a unanimous decision victory over Angela Hill in May, and the jiu-jitsu specialist is the heavy -210 favorite. She has drawn 76 percent of the money wagered on the fight at the book, while Andrade has been backed by 51 percent of the bets at +170.

–Matt Frevola (11-3-1, 5-3-1) vs. Benoit Saint-Denis (12-1, 4-1): Frevola accepted the lightweight fight against the unranked Saint-Denis back in September. Frevola, 33, enters on a three-fight win streak, while Saint-Denis has won his past four fights. That includes a second-round TKO of Thiago Moises in his most recent fight, and Saint-Denis enters as the -250 favorite. The Frenchman has been backed by only 27 percent of the fight bets, however, with the public leaning heavily toward the underdog Frevola at +200.

–Diego Lopes (22-6, 1-1) vs. Pat Sabatini (18-4, 5-1): This is the opening fight of the main card, and could prove to be one of the night’s best. This is just the third UFC fight for featherweight Lopes, the 28-year-old who showed well in a loss to Movsar Evloev in May. Sabatini, 32, is coming off a win over Lucas Almeida, and is the -120 favorite. However, Lopes has received lopsided action with 81 percent of the bets and 80 percent of the money backing him at +100.

Prelim Fights:
–Steve Erceg (10-1, 1-0) vs. Alessandro Costa (13-3, 1-1): This flyweight fight is between the unranked Erceg and the ranked Costa, who is coming off a TKO win over Jimmy Flick in June. Erceg opened at -140 and his odds have shortened further with the public backing him with 73 percent of the money to beat Costa (+165)

–Tabatha Ricci (9-1, 4-1) vs. Loopy Godinez (11-3, 6-3): The featured prelim fight features Godinez, coming off a win in September, against Ricci, who is riding a four-fight win streak. Godinez is the -165 favorite, having been backed by 66 percent of the money to beat Ricci (+135).

–Viacheslav Borshchev (7-3) vs. Nazim Sadykhov (9-1): Borshchev beat Hayisaer Maheshate by TKO in May, while Sadykhov has won both of his 2023 fights, most recently a submission of Terrance McKinney in July. Sadykhov has drawn 82 percent of the money wagered, the highest percentage among all fights on the card at the book, to beat the underdog Borshchev (+110).

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