UFC Vegas 61: Dern vs. Yan Preview & Best Bets

A top ten women’s strawweight bout with possible contender implications headlines UFC Vegas 61, as No. 5 Mackenzie Dern takes on No. 6 Yan Xiaonan.

  • Date: Saturday, October 1, 2022
  • Time: 5:00 p.m. ET
  • Venue: UFC Apex – Enterprise, Nevada | Broadcast: ESPN2

The Sledgehammer Meets The Boa Constrictor

The sometimes light heavyweight, sometimes heavyweight, questionably 5’10” Ilir Latifi takes on 45-year-old Aleksei Oleinik. Oleinik will have the experience and size advantage, with 53 more fights than the Swede, at least a four-inch height advantage, and a hefty 6.5-inch reach advantage.

However, Latifi is six years his junior (although not young at 39) and has only dropped UFC fights to Gegard Mousasi, Jan Błachowicz, Ryan Bader, Corey Anderson, Volkan Oezdemir, and Derrick Lewis.

The most likely result is a Latifi win at -186, but old-man Oleinik has an outside chance of pulling off a submission at +260.

The Senior Tour Continues

Sticking with another old fighter, Francisco Trinaldo is fresh off his 44th birthday and will stand across the cage from the 32-year-old Randy Brown. Aside from being 12 years younger, Brown will have a six-inch height and eight-inch reach advantage.

Trinaldo has won five of six fights, losing his debut at welterweight but winning his last two. However, Brown averages 1.27 more significant strikes per minute and has superior takedown defense. The path to success for Trinaldo looks to be grinding out a decision, but if the fight goes the distance, it most likely goes the other way.

Brown picks up 82 percent of his wins via decision and could jab his way to victory. At -340, an outright bet on Brown isn’t appealing, but taking Brown by points looks attractive at +135.

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Women’s Strawweight Main Event

  • Mackenzie Dern vs. Yan Xiaonan Odds
  • Odds to Win: Dern -260 | Yan +196
  • How Will Fight End: KO/TKO +420 | Submission -125 | Decision +160
  • Will the fight go the distance? Yes -168 | No -220

Mackenzie Dern enters as a heavy favorite against Yan Xiaonan. Dern has only lost twice in her career, dropping fights to Amanda Ribas and Marina Rodriguez. However, she has UFC wins over Ashley Yoder, Amanda Cooper, Hannah Cifers, Randa Markos, Virna Jandiroba, Nina Nunes, and Tecia Torres.

Yan will want to keep this fight on the feet, averaging 2.5 more significant strikes per minute. Additionally, the 3.16 strikes that Dern does throw are not technically sound. Dern is one of the more one-dimensional fighters in mixed martial arts, but she has a sizeable advantage on the ground.

It might be difficult for Dern to get the fight to the mat, but it’s essentially over once she does. Four of Dern’s seven UFC wins have been by submission, so taking her by submission at -110 is a solid bet.

UFC Vegas 61: Dern vs. Yan Picks

  • Oleinik by submission (+260)
  • Brown by decision (+135)
  • Dern by submission (-110)