Kevin Holland vs. Makhmud Muradov
Saturday, October 31, 2020 at 10:00 PM (UFC APEX)
The Line: Makhmud Muradov +144 / Kevin Holland -164 -- Over/Under: Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
Kevin Holland and Makhmud Muradov fight Saturday in UFC Vegas 12 at the UFC APEX.
Kevin Holland enters this fight with a 19-5 record and has won 47 percent of his fights by knockout. Holland has won six of his last seven fights and is coming off a September win over Darren Stewart. Holland is averaging 4.69 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 56 percent. Holland is averaging 0.96 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 36 percent. Holland is coming off a split decision victory at UFC Fight Night 178 where he landed 163 total strikes and 57 percent of his significant strikes. Holland has won each of his last three decisions and is 7-2 under the UFC banner. Holland is a lengthy, athletic fighter with an 81-inch reach and impressive standup ability. Holland is light on his feet, constantly moving and not giving his opponent an easy target and has polished boxing skills with quick hands, good footwork and enough power to end things with one clean shot. A black belt in Kung Fu and BJJ, Holland closes the distance well to land that big shot, and he’s gotten a lot more comfortable on the canvas over the years. Because of his length, Holland can really make life difficult for his opponent once on the ground and he has six career submission victories. This will be Holland’s second career fight in Las Vegas.
Makhmud Muradov enters this fight with a 24-6 record and has won 67 percent of his fights by knockout. Muradov has won each of his last 13 fights and is coming off a December win over Trevor Smith. Muradov is averaging 4.97 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 41 percent. Muradov is averaging 0.51 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 25 percent. Muradov is coming off a third round knockout at UFC on ESPN 7 where he landed 91 total strikes, 49 percent of his significant strikes and produced a takedown. Muradov hasn’t lost a fight in four years going back to his X Fight Night days. Muradov is a terrific athlete who can be a bit unpredictable on the feet, as he mixes in legs well, works well behind his jab and has a flying knee that will come out of nowhere. Muradov has great cardio that’s helped him win five of his seven career decisions, but four of his last five victories have been knockouts. Muradov has above-average takedown defense and is decent in the clinch to survive up against the cage. Muradov could improve his wrestling a bit, but his winning streak has shown he’s a rather balanced fighter at 30 years old.
Muradov in the underdog role is intriguing, as he’s a balanced fighter who isn’t used to losing and does just about everything but wrestling at an above-average level. There’s value with Muradov in this spot and I wouldn’t talk you out of it if that’s the direction you want to take. However, Holland is the more polished striker at this point and has a massive six-inch reach advantage. Holland also has better BJJ and in a smaller cage, his length is going to be an even bigger advantage. Still, this is going to be one of the better fights on the card.
I’ll back Holland and the somewhat cheap price.