Vicente Luque vs Geoff Neal
August 6, 2022 11:30 pm EDT
The Line: Geoff Neal +172 / Vicente Luque -197
(Click here for latest betting odds)
Vicente Luque and Geoff Neal fight Saturday in UFC Vegas 59 at the UFC Apex. Luque enters this fight with a 21-8-1 record and has won 52 percent of his fights by knockout. Neal enters this fight with a 14-4 record and has won 57 percent of his fights by knockout.
Luque has won 10 of his last 12 fights and is coming off an April loss to Belal Muhammad. Luque is averaging 5.30 significant strikes per minute, with an accuracy percentage of 53 percent. Luque is averaging 0.54 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 50 percent. Luque is coming off a decision loss at UFC Vegas 51 where he landed 102 total strikes but ate 136 total strikes and was taken down 5 times. The Silent Assassin has now lost his last 2 decisions and hopes to avoid back-to-back losses for the first time in his career. Luque is a standup striker who lets his hands go and has true knockout power with 11 career knockouts. 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. A black belt in BJJ and Luta Livre, Luque is simply looking to put guys to sleep, and he has a high success rate when he gets the style of fight he wants. Luque has 8 career submission victories, and 4 of those finishes have come by the brabo choke. This will be Luque’s seventh career fight in Nevada.
Neal has won 8 of his last 10 fights and is coming off a December win over Santiago Ponzinibbio. Neal is averaging 4.63 significant strikes per minute, with an accuracy percentage of 49 percent. Neal is averaging 0.50 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 50 percent. A tight split decision victory, Neal has won 4 of his 6 fights that have gone the distance. Handz of Steel is 7-2 under the UFC banner. Neal is primarily a stand-up striker with powerful hands and has been a knockout artist since his amateur days. Neal puts together combinations nice and clean, and he also has a kicking ability that can’t be ignored. A blue belt in BJJ, Neal is defending takedowns at 85 percent, so he’s going to get the fight he wants. Neal hasn’t been finished in over 5 years, and his lone submission loss came in his third pro fight. This will be Neal’s sixth career fight in Nevada.
Luque is probably the more balanced fighter of the 2, and he’s more accurate with his strikes. I can understand why he’s the favorite here. However, Neal in the underdog role is hard to pass up given what he’s done under the UFC banner. A tricky southpaw with knockout pop and solid finish rate overall, Neal gives bettors a chance as he competes even in losses. This is the first time under the UFC you can get Neal at plus money. I’ll take it.