Two welterweights looking to enter the rankings in a wide-open division will square off at UFC 251 on Friday when Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos takes on Muslim Salikhov from “Fight Island” on Yas Island in the United Arab Emirates.
Zaleski dos Santos has a 22-6 MMA record, and is 8-2 in a UFC octagon. He lost his first fight in 3.5 years to Jingliang Li last August, but backed it up with a decision win over Alexey Kunchenko at the last UFC card before Covid-19 in Brasilia in his native country. He lands 4.17 strikes per minute in the octagon, and converts 0.65 takedowns per 15 minutes of ring time.
Salikhov is Russian, but you wouldn’t know it from his moniker as the “King of Kung Fu.” The former Wushu Sanda world champion, one of only two non-Chinese people to do so, came to the sport late and has a 16-2 record at age 36, with 12 KO’s and two submission wins. He’s 3-1 in the UFC winning his last three in a row, but might want to win this on the mat with his 1.22 takedowns per three rounds, and only 2.92 strikes per minute.
Here are the betting odds at DraftKings Sportsbook for Elizeu Zaleski vs. Muslim Salikhov at UFC 251 on July 11th:
Money line odds
Elizeu Zaleski: Opened +100, now +108
Muslim Salikhov: Opened -124, now -134
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