UFC on FOX 20 Picks

MMA Picks and Predictions 7/23/16 – UFC on FOX 20

The UFC is back on FOX tonight with UFC on FOX 20. Here are some suggested picks for tonight’s MMA card.

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The UFC on FOX 20 takes place from the United Center in Chicago, Illinois. There are three prelim fights to air on UFC Fight Pass beginning at 4:30PM ET. Four prelims will be held on FOX beginning at 6PM ET and then the main card of four fights begins on FOX at 8PM ET.

Tonight’s main event is a women’s bantamweight fight between former champion Holly Holm (10-1) and rising contender Valentina Shevchenko (12-2). Oddsmakers at BetDSI have Holm as a -235 favorite while Shevchenko is listed at +190 to win. Holm is competing for the first time since losing the belt to Miesha Tate in March. She is 3-1 in the UFC, including the impressive head kick KO of Ronda Rousey. Shevchenko is coming off a decision loss to the current champion, Amanda Nunes in March as well. She is 1-1 in the UFC. Shevchenko is a strong striker with good power and the ability to grapple, but Holm is very quick on her feet thanks to her kickboxing background. Despite Holm coming off a loss, she was winning on the scorecards prior to being choked out in the fifth round. Thus far in the UFC, she has shown great control of the cage and has been difficult for her opponents to get offense on. I think Holm controls the cage again in this fight and out-points her opponent for a win. UFC ON FOX FREE PICK: HOLLY HOLM -235

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The other featured bout tonight has Edson Barboza (17-4) taking on Gilbert Melendez (22-5) in a lightweight bout. Oddsmakers have Barboza as a -200 favorite to win, while Melendez is listed with odds of +165 to win. Barboza is coming off a decision win over former champion Anthony Pettis in his best UFC showing. Melendez hasn’t fought since June of 2015 because of a failed drug test, but he has lost to Pettis and current champ Eddie Alvarez in his last two fights. Barboza is a dangerous striker with some of the hardest kicks in MMA. However, he tends to be hesitant and look for big shots. Melendez is more aggressive and better skilled all-around. He has a number of big fights under his belt while Barboza has struggled to string together big wins. If there is an underdog you’re looking to pick, go with Melendez. He should be fresh and ready to make a statement after a year off. There are still too many questions about Barboza right now. UFC ON FOX FREE PICK: GILBERT MELENDEZ +165

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