January 16, 2021

UFC 257 Draftkings lineups best picks/strategy

Hello, DraftKings players and welcome to KhabibMcGregor.com!

UFC 257 is just around the corner (takes place on Saturday, January 23rd) and we are looking forward to this event. It is going to be fireworks with “The Notorious” Conor McGregor fighting Dustin Poirier in the main event of the evening. You can find out how many pay-per-view buys we are expecting for UFC 257.

In this post below, we will take a look at the UFC 257: McGregor vs Poirier 2 event from the DFS perspective. We will give our predictions for UFC 257 DraftKings lineups and share some of our favorite DFS picks/fighters for GPP and cash games.

Our UFC 257 DFS lineups will consist of 6 picks with the salary cap of $50,000 (an average of $8300 per fighter). UFC 257 is a decently stacked 12-fight card with some very intriguing matchups in the lightweight division: McGregor vs Poirier 2, Dan Hooker vs Michael Chandler, Arman Tsarukyan vs Nasrat Haqparast, and Ottman Azaitar vs Matt Frevola.

Let’s get started!

UFC 257 best favorite picks on Draftkings

  • Khalil Rountree – $9300.

In this UFC light heavyweight bout, Khalil Rountree will be facing a Polish fighter Marcin Prachnio. Rountree opened as a -300 favorite, Prachnio is a +250 underdog in this matchup according to bookmakers.

Khalil Rountree has a lot of potential in the UFC’s light heavyweight division despite multiple losses and inconsistency. He is 2-2-1 in his last 5 UFC fights but has some impressive wins over Paul Craig, Gokhan Saki, and Eryk Anders.

Take a look at Khalil Rountree’s fight against Eryk Anders. Rountree put on a Muay Thai clinic on his opponent.

Rountree’s Achilles heel is his weak ground game which we saw in his most recent fight against Ion Cutelaba. Cutelaba took Rountree down multiple times and smashed him on the ground in the first round.

Marcin Prachnio is 0-3 in the UFC and this fight might very well be his last in the promotion. There was a lot of hype about Prachnio before he signed with the UFC but his most recent performances were disappointing, to say the least. Marcin lost all 3 of his UFC fights in the very first round with the most recent knockout loss to Mike Rodriguez on August 22, 2020.

This is a very favorable matchup for Khalil Rountree as Marchin Prachnio is also a striker (he is a black belt in karate) and this fight will most likely take place standing. Prachnio is dangerous and he has a lot of knockout victories in his resume but a fact that he was knocked out in his last 3 fights makes you wonder about his chin. And his chin will be tested by Rountree as well as his legs (Khalil has some deadly calf kicks).

We are predicting a dynamic fight with back-and-forth stand-up action which will likely lead to Prachnio’s 4th consecutive knockout loss. There is a very good chance Rountree will finish Prachnio in the 1st or 2nd round and will earn 90+ fantasy points on Draftkings.

  • Conor McGregor – $9100.
Conor McGregor one of the best Draftkings UFC 257 picks on the slate

Conor McGregor will be one of the most popular UFC 257 picks and probably the highest-owned fighter in both cash and GPP DraftKings tournaments on January 23rd.

If we look at the betting odds, McGregor is a -270 favorite and Poirier is a +220 underdog in this matchup.

It’s hard to avoid playing “The Notorious” in our DraftKings lineups. He already fought Poirier in the past 6 years ago and got a quick finish in the first round. No doubt, Dustin Poirier is a completely different fighter at this point and he is truly evolved into one of the best athletes in the UFC’s lightweight division.

But stylistically, McGregor is a bad matchup for Poirier. Both fighters do their best work on their feet, like to box and trade shots. McGregor’s stand-up and boxing is more technical than Poirier’s; he is also a superior counter-puncher.

With all being said, Conor will be landing better, more accurate strikes than Dustin, and sooner or later he will get a much-needed finish. Yeah, McGregor really wants that rematch with Nurmagomedov in 2021.

We don’t necessarily expect a 1st round finish in this one as Dustin Poirier is very tough and he showed a very solid chin since he moved up to the lightweight division.

We predict “The Notorious” will KO/TKO “The Diamond” in the 2nd, 3rd or 4th round and expect it to be a lot more competitive than their first outing. In this scenario, McGregor can possibly land close to 100 significant strikes, get a knockdown (who knows, maybe even multiple knockdowns), and earn 100+ fantasy points on Draftkings.

We will be locking Conor McGregor in most of our UFC 257 Draftkings lineups as he has one of the highest ceilings on the slate.

  • Arman Tsarukyan – $8900.
Arman Tsarukyan fight against Islam Makhachev

A 24-year-old Russian-Armenian fighter Arman Tsarukyan is one of the most talented youngsters in the stacked lightweight division. We believe Arman has a very bright future in the UFC and if he beats Nasrat Haqparast he will most likely get a top 15 ranked opponent afterward.

If we look at the betting odds, Tsarukyan is a -240 favorite while Naqparast is a +190 underdog in this UFC 257 matchup.

Naqparast is not an easy opponent, he has a respectable 4-2 record in the UFC. But Arman Tsarukyan is just that good and he beats Naqparast in most aspects of the fight game.

Tsarukyan lost his debut UFC bout to Khabib’s protege Islam Makhachev. It was a competitive fight in which Arman impressed with his ground game and grappling skills. Since then, he has two victories against solid opposition – Olivier Aubin-Mercier and Davi Ramos.

Arman is a very well-rounded fighter with above-average boxing/kickboxing skills as well as strong takedowns, wrestling, and submissions which could be a problem for Naqparast (primarily a striker).

Bookmakers believe the most likely outcome of this fight is Tsarukyan winning by a decision but we can also see the case for Arman getting a finish on the ground via submission. Making a big statement on the undercard before Conor McGregor’s fight would be huge for a talented prospect.

There is some value in picking Tsarukyan in your UFC 257 lineups especially in Draftkings GPP tournaments. He has a high ceiling of 90+ fantasy points and it is unlikely he will have ownership over 30%.

UFC 257 best underdog picks on Draftkings

  • Michael Chandler – $7700.
Michael Chandler will make his UFC debut at UFC 257 against Dan Hooker

Michael Chandler vs Dan Hooker is a very tough fight to predict. Chandler, a former Bellator lightweight champion, will make his UFC debut at UFC 257. It is going to be Chandler’s biggest challenge to date in his entire MMA career. This is a serious step up in competition heading from Bellator to the most stacked UFC’s lightweight division.

But Michael Chandler knows exactly what he is getting into. He has a lot of MMA experience as well as experience competing in collegiate wrestling.

Dan Hooker is a more technical striker and has a longer reach than Chandler. That’s why Hooker will have an advantage if he will be able to keep it standing at a kickboxing range. But Michael Chandler is very fast which might be a problem for Hooker if he will be successfully closing the distance and shooting for takedowns.

We think there is some value to playing Chandler in UFC 257 DFS lineups as it is a very close matchup and Dan Hooker will be a higher owned fighter on the slate (though, we will be playing Hooker in some of our lineups). Chandler is known as a fast starter and a first-round finish in this fight is definitely a possibility with an upside of 90+ Draftkings points.

  • Matt Frevola – $7400.

This is a very interesting matchup between the two lightweights Matt Frevola and Ottman Azaitar. Azaitar is a -160 favorite while Frevola is a +130 underdog according to Bovada.

Ottman Azaitar is an undefeated fighter with a professional record 13-0; he made his UFC debut in 2019 and so far he has two first round knockout victories over Teemu Packalen and Khama Worthy.

There is a lot of hype about Azaitar but in reality, he was never been tested. Matt Frevola is a more experienced and skilled fighter than anyone Azaitar fought in the past and we think Frevola will be able to weather the storm in the first round and avoid early bombs from Ottman.

Matt Frevola’s wrestling and BJJ experience should really help him in this matchup. We predict Frevola will be able to take Azaitar to the ground, tire him up, and get a dominant decision win which will earn 80+ fantasy points.

  • Marina Rodriguez – $7000.

In the women’s strawweight division Amanda Ribas will be taking on Marina Rodriguez. For some bizarre reason, Ribas is a huge favorite in this fight (she is approx. -300 favorite) while Rodriguez is a +230 underdog.

Thanks for sticking out to the very end! What are your favorite fantasy picks for UFC 257? Which fighters are you going to play in most of your lineups? Who are you going to avoid?

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