Michael Chiesa vs Vicente Luque
August 7, 2021 11:15 pm EDT
The Line: Vicente Luque -110 / Michael Chiesa -110
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Michael Chiesa and Vicente Luque fight Saturday in UFC 265 at the Toyota Center. Chiesa enters this fight with a 18-4 record and has won 61 percent of his fights by submission. Luque enters this fight with a 20-7-1 record and has won 55 percent of his fights by knockout.
Chiesa has won seven his last nine fights and is coming off a January win over Neil Magny. Chiesa is averaging 1.89 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 40 percent. Chiesa is averaging 3.60 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 52 percent. Chiesa is coming off a decision win at UFC Fight Island 8 where he landed 93 total strikes and produced four takedowns. Chiesa has now won four straight fights and looks for two wins in the calendar year for the first time since 2015. Chiesa is a purple belt in BJJ and has a reputation of being a good scrambler and having a quality ground game. Chiesa has 11 career submission victories and has never won a fight by knockout. Chiesa is going to live and die on the ground and eight of his wins have come by rear-naked choke. This will be Chiesa’s first career fight in Texas.
Luque has won nine of his last 10 fights and is coming off a March win over Tyron Woodley. Luque is averaging 5.74 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 54 percent. Luque is averaging 0.66 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 50 percent. Luque is coming off a submission win at UFC 260 that earned fight of the night honors. Luque has produced finishes in each of his last three fights. Luque is a standup striker who doesn’t stop letting his hands go and has true knockout power as we’re seeing more and more these days. Luque has some of the cleanest boxing technique in the sport and attacks the head at a high percentage, spending little time working the body or mixing in leg kicks. Luque is simply coming in to put guys to sleep and he has a high success rate when he gets the style of fight he wants. Luque does have seven submission wins and is a purple belt in Luta Livre, so he can hold his own on the ground. Luque is coming off his first submission win in four years. This will be Luque’s first career fight in Texas.
Chiesa should probably be the favorite here, as his southpaw stance will be tricky on the feet and he has a decent edge on the canvas. However, Luque has a respectable takedown defense and is the overwhelming favorite standing up. As long as Luque can avoid the ground, he’s going to land some bombs and have a chance to finish this fight. Luque has been on a tear lately and he has a real chance to finish this fight if he stays on his feet.
I lean toward Luque in this pick em.