Surging featherweight prospect Zabit Magomedsharipov (17-1, 6 KOs, 7 SUBs) will meet the underrated Calvin Kattar (20-3, 9 KOs, 3 SUBs) at UFC on ESPN+ 21 on Saturday, November 9, 2019 at the CSKA Arena in Moscow, Russia. The card streams live on ESPN+ starting 2pm ET.
Khabib Nurmagomedov might be leading the pack of talented Dagestani fighters crushing it inside the UFC, but Zabit Magomedsharipov is close behind. The talented featherweight is 5-0 inside the octagon - extending a 13-fight winning streak - and just a win or two away from a title shot. More importantly, he’s not just winning - the Abe Lincoln lookalike is straight up styling on his opponents.
The Russian isn’t the typical Dagestani grinder either. Sure, he’s an elite wrestler, but he’s also a high-flying striker and a flashy submission artist. In a division brimming with exciting fighters, Zabit still stands out as one of its most sensational scrappers. Currently ranked No. 5 at 145 pounds, nobody would be surprised to see him face the winner of Holloway-Volkanovski in December.
Of course, he’s got to get through Calvin Kattar this Saturday first. While Kattar might not be the contender that Zabit probably should be facing, The Boston Finisher is a proven commodity at 145 pounds. A loss to Moicano is the only blemish in his UFC record, but he more than made up for it with a win over Ricardo Lamas in his most recent outing. Lamas isn’t the beast that he used to be, but he’s not far removed from being a perennial contender either. Beating Zabit would put him right in the title mix.
With Junior Dos Santos out of the main event, this featherweight scrap has been elevated to the main event. That means we get 25 minutes of an awesome scrap between two exciting young featherweights. The UFC Odds at Betcris opened with the Russian as the clear favorite, but let’s break down the matchup and get to your best betting picks so Sign Up at Betcris! Live UFC betting at Betcris is available as well, in case you want to make bets on real-time line updates.
- Zabit Magomedsharipov -300
- Calvin Kattar +228
- Fight goes/doesn’t go to decision: -145 / +105
Significant Striking Stats
- Strikes landed per minute: Magomedsharipov 4.53 / Kattar 5.06
- Striking accuracy: Magomedsharipov 53% / Kattar 42%
- Strikes absorbed per minute: Magomedsharipov 2.44 / Kattar 6.35
- Striking defense: Magomedsharipov 66% / Kattar 55%
- Takedowns per 15 minutes: Magomedsharipov 6.23 / Kattar 0.61
- Takedown accuracy: Magomedsharipov 59% / Kattar 33%
- Takedown defense: Magomedsharipov 77% / Kattar 80%
- Submission per 15 minutes: Magomedsharipov 0.96 / Kattar 0
Zabit might be a skinny dude, but he packs some serious strength on his 6’1” frame. For starters, he lands mores than 6 takedowns per 15 minutes - an astonishing number at any weight class. On top of that, his lanky limbs lets him be creative in the submission game - his unique kneebar on Brandon Davis just highlights his athleticism and flexibility too.
But unlike his Dagestani counterparts, Magomedsharipov can really bang. His standup is wild and flashy, but surprisingly effective. He makes good use of his lanky frame to dictate distance but sustains a high volume. Landing well over four strikes a minute, the Russian has proven that he has the cardio to sustain an extraordinarily high striking + takedown rate.
Kattar has exceeded expectations inside the octagon, and he was a well-regarded prospect to begin with. His knockout power has really developed since signing with the UFC, and the 31-year old’s new killshot power suggests that he has evolved. Kattar’s technical boxing game fares well under pressure, and that should be extraordinarily helpful against an aggressive fighter like Zabit.
UFC Odds Pick: Magomedsharipov to win at -300
This could very well be a much more competitive matchup than the odds suggest. In particular, the wrestling should really separate the Russian from the American. At the current price, we feel good with a sizeable bet on Magomedsharipov - he is simply far more talented than his opponent.