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Best bets and expert picks for UFC Fight Night and Bellator 286


UFC women’s strawweight contenders Mackenzie Dern and Yan Xiaonan look to shake up the rankings as they go head-to-head at the UFC APEX in Las Vegas on Saturday (7 p.m. ET on ESPN+, with prelims at 4 p.m. ET on ESPN+).

Dern, ranked No. 6 in ESPN’s divisional rankings, earned a split decision win over Tecia Torres in her last bout in April. Yan, who is ranked just ahead of Dern at No. 5, is coming off back-to-back losses in her past two fights.

On the same night, Bellator hosts Bellator 286 at Long Beach Arena in Long Beach. The main event features Adam Borics challenging reigning featherweight champion Patricio ‘Pitbull’ Freire. Freire is ranked No. 3 in ESPN’s featherweight rankings.

Brett Okamoto spoke to Xtreme Couture MMA coach Eric Nicksick to get his perspective on the matchup in the UFC main event, and ESPN’s betting experts Ian Parker and Reed Kuhn add their insights and analysis for the main events of both fight cards and other intriguing bets they like.

Editor’s note: Responses have been edited for brevity and clarity.


Women’s strawweight: Mackenzie Dern vs. Yan Xiaonan


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