It’s two bantamweights that will lift the lid on UFC on ESPN 14 from Fight Island as Nathaniel Wood takes on John Castaneda in the opener live from Abu Dhabi this Saturday. This fight was originally scheduled for Umar Nurmagomedov, but Castaneda makes his UFC debut as a replacement who is unable to get to the United Arab Emirates from Dagestan after the passing of his uncle.
Wood is 16-4, 3-1 in the UFC with three submission victories. The 26-year-old from London averages 1.9 takedowns per 15 minutes in the octagon with a 71% accuracy rating. After winning his first three he fell to John Dodson via KO with just 16 seconds remaining in the fight in February. He was the bantamweight champion of the Cage Warriors promotion before signing with UFC in 2018. He’ll look to win this on the mat, and enters as a big favorite
Castaneda makes his UFC debut with a 17-4 professional record and 12 career stoppages. He was a winner in Dana White’s Contender Series in 2017, but didn’t earn a contract with the unanimous decision victory. At 28 years old, “Sexi Mexi” has mostly been fighting on the Combate Americas circuit. He holds a double major in criminal law and Spanish from the University of Minnesota-Mankato, where he left the wrestling team after his freshman season and was fighting in MMA as a professional by his junior year.
Here are the betting odds at DraftKings Sportsbook for Nathaniel Wood vs. John Castaneda at UFC Fight Night from Abu Dhabi on July 25th:
Money line odds
Nathaniel Wood: -455
John Castaneda: +320
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