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UFC Vegas 73 Main Event Breakdown

11 days ago



MMA’s top promotion has one last fight before recessing for the Memorial Day holiday weekend. This Saturday, the UFC returns to its Las Vegas homebase for another edition of UFC Fight Night. 

After a trip down to the Carolinas for UFC Charlotte, the UFC heads back to the UFC Apex for UFC Vegas 73 and the UFC Vegas 73 main event.  Live coverage of Saturday’s show is exclusive to ESPN‘s subscription-based streaming platform, ESPN+, inside the United States.

In foreign markets, UFC Vegas 73 will be streamed live on UFC Fight Pass this Saturday. Action kicks off with the undercard at 4 pm ET/ 1 pm PT. Main card fights begin at just past 7 pm ET/ 4 pm PT.

Strawweight Action the Focus for UFC Vegas 73 Main Event

Immediately following a middleweight co-main event at the UFC Apex between Edmen Shahbazyan (12-3 MMA, 5-3 UFC) and Anthony Hernandez (10-2 MMA, 4-2 UFC), the action will shift to 115 lbs. No. 8 contender MacKenzie Dern (12-3 MMA, 7-3 UFC) looks to improve on her standing when she battles No. 14 contender Angela Hill (15-12 MMA, 10-12 UFC).

As with all UFC headliners, the UFC Vegas 73 main event is an advertised five rounds at five minutes per round to close the show.

A Rebooking

This fight was slated to have taken place a week ago in Charlotte.  The promotion shifted the fight to this Saturday after a planned women’s bantamweight main event matching Raquel Pennington with Irene Aldana was scrubbed amid the latter being elevated to the UFC 289 main event for the UFC Women’s Bantamweight Championship on June 10.

That night, Aldana, the No. 5 contender at 135 lbs., will meet incumbent titleholder Amanda Nunes for the belt. So, a week after Dern and Hill were supposed to fight, these two get the main event slot.

UFC Vegas 73 Main Event Fighter Comparison and Betting Odds

Heading into the UFC Vegas 73 main event on Saturday night, MacKenzie Dern stands as the taller contender at 5-foot-4, compared to the 5-foot-3 frame of Angela Hill. The latter owns a 1 1/2-inch reach advantage (64 1/2 inches to 63 inches even) and a one-inch leg reach advantage (38 1/2 inches to 37 1/2 inches) over the former going into this fight.

As it stands currently, the oddsmakers have Angela Hill installed as a -190 favorite on the money line, with MacKenzie Dern countering as a +150 underdog. If you plan on betting on this or any other fight happening this weekend, please wager responsibly.

MacKenzie Dern Looks to Get Back in Win Column in UFC Vegas 73 Main Event

MacKenzie Dern enters the UFC Vegas 73 main event on Saturday night having posted a record of 3-2 in her last five fights. Most recently, she dropped a majority decision to Yan Xiaonan (17-3, 1 NC MMA, 8-2 UFC) on Oct. 1 during UFC Vegas 61‘s main event.

After the fight, Dern talked to Megan Olivi. She expressed regret that she was unable to get the job done.

“I didn’t do what I came to do,” Dern began. “My goal was if I got to the ground, I should be finishing it. I believe I have the best Jiu-Jitsu in the women’s division, so I had lots of opportunities to finish and she was just a better fighter than me. I couldn’t… I just feel like I’ve been getting so better and it’s sad to not be able to show it in the fight.”

Dern mentioned that she would use the result of the October fight as a teachable moment. With over seven months between fights, the UFC Vegas 73 main event will either be a lesson learned or one forgotten.

Angela Hill Seeking Three-Fight Winning Streak

In the other corner, Angela Hill has gone 2-3 in her last five MMA contests. At present, she’s on a two-fight winning streak.

Back in December, she scored a unanimous decision victory over Emily Ducote (12-7 MMA, 1-1 UFC)  in UFC Orlando. In her post-fight press conference, Hill credited her success to her coaches.

“I just think I have a good team with me right now,” Hill said. “I’ve been working a lot on my ground game. I have three excellent grappling coaches. I have (former Bellator MMA Light Heavyweight Champion) Phil Davis, Justin Flores and Johnny Faria, and they’re all helping me with my ground game. Honestly, I could fight a grappler right now but I just like to throw hands so much.”

Can Angela Hill move up in the rankings with a win? Tune into the UFC Vegas 73 main event and find out?

Analysis, Film Study, and Prediction

Stylistically, the UFC Vegas 73 main event looks to favor MacKenzie Dern, a champion submission grappler with a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, compared to Angela Hill’s status as a purple belt in BJJ.

Dern Vicious With Submissions

Of MacKenzie Dern’s 12 career wins, seven have come by submission. Given her status as a decorated grappler with a black belt in BJJ, it’s a foregone conclusion that the first takedown of the fight could lead to someone getting tapped out.

Her 2020 fight against Hannah Cifers is a textbook example of this constant. During the first round of a scheduled three, Dern began by absorbing a number of strikes in the clinch.

From there, Cifers put Dern in a headlock before she was able to back away. The latter stalked her opponent, and while Cifers took her down again, she reversed a leglock to secure the kneebar.

All MacKenzie Dern needs is just one opening to try and capitalize on an adversary’s mistake. If she gets that, the UFC Vegas 73 main event will be over in a hurry.

Look for Hill to Land the Knockout Blow

While it hasn’t happened lately for Angela Hill, when she scores a knockout, it can be something to behold. Her Invicta fight versus Alida Grey is one of those bouts.

Although this contest was to have been a three-round affair, Hill needed less than half of a round to write a finish to the story. The fighters exchanged blows to start the contest, but Hill quickly became the aggressor, continually throwing right-handed punches.

Hill mixed in some kicks, but she returned to her bread and butter on this night, landing a big right hand to stun Grey. At that point, she was smelling blood and went in for the kill with a barrage of shots to the body against the cage fence.

Referee John McCarthy couldn’t stop the fight quickly enough. If Hill can land the right hand, the UFC Vegas 73 main event will be hers.

Final Thoughts

On paper, the UFC Vegas 73 main event looks to be an amazing fight. Do yourself a favor and don’t miss this one.

Prediction: MacKenzie Dern by Unanimous Decision.

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