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UFC 251: Amanda Ribas vs. Paige VanZant odds, picks and best bets

Joe Williams
Sportsbook Wire

Amanda Ribas and Paige VanZant do battle in a women's flyweight bout on the main card at UFC 251 Saturday at the UFC's Fight Island facility on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. The prelims kick off at 6 p.m. ET on ESPN/ ESPN+, followed by the main card set for 10 p.m. ET on Pay-Per-View.

Ribas (9-1) makes her fourth appearance at the UFC level, and she looks to remain unbeaten at the top level, too. Her last fight was March 14 on the Lee-Oliveira card in Jacksonville, Fla., sneaking past Randa Markos by unanimous decision. That's the same way Ribas won against Mackenzie Dern Oct. 12, 2019. Only three of Ribas' 10 career fights have gone the distance, however, and she is 3-1 via KO/TKO and 3-0 by way of submission in her professional career.

VanZant (8-4) is a heavy underdog (+500) in this one despite the fact she owns a 52.0-42.33 significant strike-accuracy percentage advantage. She'll be wise to keep the fight toe-to-toe if she wants a chance. Ribas owns a 2.02-1.31 takedown average and 50.0-33.33 takedown-accuracy percentage advantage, while also leading 1.61-0.98 in submission average. VanZant is just 2-3 over her past five outings, and that includes two losses by submission. This will be her first fight in nearly 16 months due to a rash of arm injuries. The last time we saw her was a submission win over Rachael Ostovich Jan. 19, 2019.

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Ribas vs. VanZant odds and betting lines

Odds via BetMGM; access USA TODAY Sports' betting odds for a full list. Lines last updated Friday at 5:00 p.m. ET.

Ribas (-715) is a heavy favorite, so you'll have to be a bit more creative than just betting the 2-way line. There is no way you can risk more than seven times your potential return.

Also see:

Look to RIBAS BY KO/TKO, DQ or SUBMISSION ( +115) in this one, as it's a much better value than the 2-way line. In addition, load up on round betting, as RIBAS IN ROUND 1 ( +333), RIBAS IN ROUND 2 ( +500) and RIBAS IN ROUND 3 ( +900) all pay well. If you want to roll the dice, bet Rounds 2 and 3 and hope it doesn't go to the judges. That would make for quite a nice payday.

NO ( -112): WILL THE FIGHT GO THE DISTANCE? is a sound play, too. Five of the past six fights for VanZant have finished inside the distance, and her takedown defense and vulnerability on the canvas makes this one likely to end before the judges get to determine a winner.

New to sports betting? A $10 bet on Ribas to win by KO/TKO, DQ or Submission (+115) returns a profit of $11.50. A $10 wager on Ribas to win in Round 2 (+500) returns a profit of $50, while a $10 pick on Ribas to win in Round 3 (+900) fetches a return of $90.

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