The caveat, however, is that Waldburger has routinely fallen victim to knockout or technical knockout in attempting to out-grapple opponents. Having been finished six times in his eight losses by strikes, Waldburger will again be at risk against Pyle. With Waldburger holding just a 1.8 SLPM to Pyle's 2.66 SLPM, and given that Pyle has won three of his last four victories by KO/TKO, it's entirely possible that Pyle could stop Waldburger in his tracks. Furthermore, Waldburger sports a very poor 37 percent striking defense; he'll want to get this fight to the ground as soon as he can.
Despite all of this, the much younger Waldburger improves with each fight while Pyle simply continues to age. How long can he defy the odds? With Waldburger a plus-180 favorite, consider the young submission artist a great bet to win if he can stay out of trouble.
Insider value pick: Waldburger
Before losing two in a row, the Milwaukee-based Koch showed incredible promise, as he entered the lightweight division with two wins in a row and an impressive "Knockout of the Night" in his UFC debut. Since then, he has struggled against solid opponents at the weight class in Dustin Poirier and Ricardo Lamas. As a result, Koch has dropped to featherweight to reignite his career, taking on struggling submission specialist Oliveira. And with some key strengths that will be more pronounced in the lighter division, Koch should be able to return to winning form on Saturday night.
At 5-foot-10, Koch was a taller lightweight, but in the featherweight division, his size advantage will be very noticeable. Taking on Oliveira, who is two inches shorter, the former lightweight should able to use his larger frame to implement a productive striking attack, which has previously averaged 2.2 SLPM at a 42 percent accuracy rate. Though Oliveira has a similar production of 2.22 SLPM, he does so landing just 34 percent of his strikes. And given that Oliveira has lost two out of his last three fights by KO/TKO, Koch should have the opportunity to attempt to finish Oliveira early on.
Oliveira's main strength is his submission ability. To implement it, he gladly concedes position, maintaining just an 11 percent takedown defense, yet attempting 1.63 submissions per 15 minutes. However, Koch has never lost a fight in his career by submission, and maintains a similar 1.61 submissions per 15 minutes himself. And with a very good takedown defense of 79 percent, Koch should be able to control the pace of this fight, standing or on the ground, as he has the skill set to take it wherever he is more comfortable.
Thus, with the ability to dictate how the fight plays out, Koch should find a renewed career in the featherweight division with a win over Oliveira. He's a good bet -- even at the high price of minus-420.
Insider value pick: Koch