UFC Fight Night 42 Fight Breakdown: Sergio Pettis (-440) vs. Yaotzin Meza (+350)

Yaotzin-Meza-UFC-on-FOX-8-w-475x326 One of the prelims at UFC Fight Night 42 is a three-round bantamweight bout between Sergio “The Phenom” Pettis and Yaotzin Meza. The current betting line for the fight at Several Bookmakers lists Pettis as a -440 favorite (bet $440 to win $100) while Meza is a +350 underdog (bet $100 to win $350). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas originally opened up Pettis at -315 and Meza at +235, and so far all the action has been in the direction of “The Phenom.” I agree with the line movement as I believe Pettis will defeat Meza. Here’s why. Pettis (10-1) is the younger brother of UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis and just like his big brother he’s an extremely dangerous fighter who is talented in all facets of the game. Just 20 years old, Pettis is one of the youngest fighters in the UFC but he’s already had some success, defeating Will Campuzano in his Octagon debut back at UFC 167 and then following it with a competitive bout against Alex Caceres at UFC on FOX 10. Although he did lose via third-round submission to Caceres, he was also 20 seconds away from possibly getting a decision on the judges’ cards and the fact he was able to hang in there against a top contender like Caceres in just his second UFC fight speaks volumes about his striking level. A gifted striker with devastating knockout power, Pettis is also slick with his submissions on the ground. He’s dangerous everywhere, with his only flaw being his wrestling as he’s been prone to the takedown — just like Anthony. But as long as he keeps fight standing, he will always have a huge edge, and that’s why you see him as such a huge favorite in this fight against Meza. Meza (20-9) is 1-2 in the UFC and is barely clinging on to his roster spot. 33 years of age, Meza has a win in the UFC over John Albert but losses to Chad Mendes and Chico Camus. In the losses he showed that his chin is a bit of a question mark and his cardio did not look good at all against Camus, and neither did his defensive wrestling. With nine losses to date in his career, Meza has lost six bouts by way of stoppage and going up against a dynamic fighter like Pettis could give him serious issues. Although Meza is a decent grappler and although he trains at a solid camp at The MMA Lab, he just doesn’t seem like a UFC caliber fighter and at 33 years of age his best days are most likely behind him at this point. I believe Pettis should be able to keep this fight on the feet, light Meza up with his strikes, and finish his opponent with a highlight-reel knockout. And if for whatever reason the fight does hit the floor, I believe Pettis can land a submission there. Either way, I see him winning by stoppage. At -440 I believe there’s some value in Pettis as a parlay piece and I would play him up to -500. I also see some value on the UNDER 2.5 rounds total, which currently pays +125. I believe Pettis wins this fight by stoppage most of the time so I like that play quite a bit since it’s plus money.

Written by Adam Martin.

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