UFC Fight Night predictions — Holly Holm vs Mayra Bueno Silva: Fight card, odds, start time, live stream

Holly Holm, a former UFC champion and perennial contender, looks to overcome rising contender Mayra Bueno Silva on Saturday night. An impressive showing goes a long way in a division without a champion. Holm vs. Bueno Silva headlines UFC Fight Night in Las Vegas in the aftermath of Amanda Nunes’ retirement.

Holm’s (15-6) longevity in combat sports is a bit unfathomable. The decorated Hall of Fame boxer made the switch to mixed martial arts in 2011. She rode the momentum all the way to an iconic head-kick knockout of Ronda Rousey in 2015 to capture the UFC women’s bantamweight champion. It’s been a bumpy road since with Holm falling short in four subsequent title fights: two at women’s bantamweight and two at women’s featherweight. Holm always appears to be within striking distance of another opportunity and intends to fill the void left by Nunes.

“Too bad I couldn’t get a rematch with her and now she’s retired,” Holm told CBS Sports.

“My goal is still the belt, regardless. If she ever wants to come out of retirement, maybe that can happen,” Holm said at Wednesday’s media day. “Not every fighter stays retired, right? But I do feel like I’m one fight away from the title regardless. If at 145 or 135, but I was excited to fight for the title even before she retired. It does shake things up a little bit in the division.”

Bueno Silva (10-2-1) is a jolt of energy in the somewhat stagnant division. She has four stoppages — three armbars and a kneebar — in four UFC appearances and is a perfect 3-0 since dropping back down to 135 pounds. Bueno Silva, teeming with confidence, is determined to prove that she deserves the vacant title shot over other contenders like Juliana Pena and Raquel Pennington.

“I know that nobody has victories like mine,” Bueno Silva told CBS Sports. “I finish my fights. I have Performance of the Night and Fight of the Night. These girls have nothing. I believe if I put on a show with Holly Holm, I’m next.

“I think my striking is better and my jiu-jitsu is better… I’m better than Holly at everything.”

There isn’t much on the card that would attract a mainstream fan, but there are a few fights that deserve a little more love. Ottman Azaitar and Francisco Prado have a combined 23 stoppages in 24 victories and are likely to produce fireworks. A similar statistic can be applied to Terrance McKinney vs. Nazim Sadykhov, who has 21 combined finishes in 22 professional wins. UFC Fight Night also benefits from an appearance by rising contender Jack Della Maddalena whose fight at UFC 290 last week fell through.

Below is the rest of the fight card for Saturday night with the latest odds from Caesars Sportsbook before we get to a prediction and pick on the main event.

UFC Fight Night card, odds

Holly Holm -170 Mayra Bueno Silva +145 Women’s bantamweight
Jack Della Maddalena -500 Bassil Hafez +380 Welterweight
Francisco Prado -115 Ottman Azaitar -105 Lightweight
Junyong Park -160 Albert Duraev +135 Middleweight
Norma Dumont -140  Chelsea Chandler +120 Women’s featherweight
Nazim Sadykhov -150 Terrance McKinney +125 Lightweight

UFC Fight Night viewing information

Date: July 15 | Start time: 10 p.m. ET (main card)
Location: UFC Apex — Las Vegas, Nevada
TV channel: ESPN+


Holly Holm vs. Mayra Bueno Silva: It’s hard to predict when age will completely derail a fighter, but Holm has remained relatively damage-free over the course of her career. Holm’s constant evolution has introduced improved wrestling into her game lately, but it would be wise to avoid Bueno Silva’s impressive offensive jiu-jitsu off her back. Holm’s success is dependent on the classic Holm formula: stay on the outside, tally up points and maybe land that patented head kick. Holm absorbs nearly half as many strikes per minute as her opponent and has gone to the decision in nearly three-quarters of her pro-MMA fights. Bueno Silva has a great submission game but with a 50% takedown rate and a 2-2 record with the judges, it is imperative she finds the takedown. Holm is savvy and by far the biggest challenge Bueno Silva has faced. Expect Holm to have enough juice for one last run to a world title. Holm via UD.

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