DraftKings Chalk Board: UFC Vegas 83
Song Yadong

Last week was a wild adventure. My tournament entries were all burnt pretty early on, and then crashed and burned when Brundange slammed and finished Zack Reese. Thankfully cash went well though, even though I would love to have the main event stack back. Almost everyone was rostering a single digit score somewhere though, so it all worked out on the cash front regardless.

This week, despite the event originally being scheduled for China, we will be heading back to the Apex Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. While having no crowd is a bit of a let down, we do have a solid main event between Song Yadong and Chris Gutierrez followed up by numerous international prospects scheduled to give us a show. All things considered, the card should be good for fantasy, but it certainly does leave something to be desired on paper. The good news is that UFC 296 is right around the corner.

For anyone that hasn’t read this article before, The Chalk Board is a DraftKings Daily Fantasy Sports article where I attempt to navigate the $9000+ salary range by offering you insight into who I will be using, considering, or fading from my personal lineups. In turn, this can help navigate the lower salary range as well by design. If you choose to alter your lineups based on my statements in this article, please understand that I am not a professional gambler or DFS player, so that decision is yours. Live with the results YOU get from the decisions YOU make.

Due to the overwhelming amount of fighters in the 9k salary range this week, we will be splitting them up a bit differently than normal. This article is also in its last days, we will be finishing the year out with it, and then it will be moving behind the paywall with the rest of our incredible DraftKings fantasy offering.

 

 

LOCK THEM IN

HYUN SUNG PARK – $9500 (-600)

Hyun Sung Park put up a pretty dismal score in his official UFC debut, but this time around he is fighting Shannon Ross. For those that don’t know, Shannon Ross is like the Brooklyn Brawler of the UFC – he is sent out there to lose basically. Ross has serious durability issues and my expectation would be for Park to win by knockout in the first, or early second at worst. This should for sure put up a decent score for cash, but could remain questionable in the larger tournaments if the finish doesn’t happen early. For the contests that I play I will be locking him in for cash and tournaments however.

TATSURO TAIRA – $9400 (-515)

Tatsuro Taira is an absolute beast in the grappling department, which is almost always a winning recipe for a DraftKings lineup. Taira’s opponent this week, Carlos Hernandez, is one of the strongest opponents that someone near the top of the salary tier has however, and that is enough to have me relegate Taira to tournaments only. If he can get the grappling going, he will put up a big time score, especially considering that Hernandez works back to his feet very well, which opens the door for more takedowns. If that doesn’t happen though, then Taira may not even win the fight, let alone put up a score worthy of his salary. I don’t mind taking that chance for tournaments, but I will be ignoring him for cash.

SONG YADONG – $9200 (-370)

Song Yadong is a high level striker near the top of the division, and his power has proven to be very impressive. Unfortunately in this fight he is fighting the ultra durable Chris Gutierrez, and that makes Yadong a tough play. I will be using Song Yadong in cash contests because I firmly believe that he wins this fight, but I will be avoiding him in my tournament entries because I don’t have faith in an early finish here. Gutierrez should be a nice stack option in cash as well due to his level of durability.

 

 

ROLL THE DICE

DANIEL MARCOS – $9600 (-475)

This fight has been scratched last I heard, but because I have no idea which side fell out, I am going to continue to write up Daniel Marcos as if he will be fighting this week. Marcos is an undefeated prospect that is seriously skilled in the striking department. Unfortunately his price tag this week means that we need a first minute knockout from him to pay off, and that is just highly unlikely given that most of his knockouts come through volume and not one punch power. I think there could be some merit rolling the dice on that early finish in large field tournaments, which I personally do not play. When it comes to cash or small field tournaments, I will likely be avoiding Marcos as I believe that there are too many better options for every contest type in the salary range.

 

STAY AWAY

MELQUIZAEL COSTA – $9000 (-250)

When you really get right into the weeds of this fight between Melquizael Costa and his opponent, Steve Garcia, there are several legitimate concerns on both sides of the equation. Speaking about Costa, however, the main concern is that in order for Costa to pay off this price tag he would have to get the job done very early in the first round. That happens to be when Steve Garcia is his most dangerous. For that reason I will be avoiding Costa in this one, and any plays that I make for this fight will be on the Garcia side. For the most part those plays will be limited to tournament entries as I believe there are better options for cash.

 

FINAL THOUGHT

This is not the greatest card at all and it continues to get worse as the date gets closer, but from a fantasy perspective this slate is pretty solid and shouldn’t turn into the absolute shit show like last week did. My plan is to relax, enjoy the show, and get prepared to finish out 2023 with the epic lineup of UFC 296 that is rapidly approaching.

Hopefully, this Chalk Board article has helped you at least reduce the number of options in the upper salary range, and in turn isolate a few dogs you feel good about. I would like to take this time to again remind you to make YOUR OWN decisions. Don’t buy into anything I say unless it makes sense to you as well.

Good luck this week! If you need any help with your DraftKings entries you can join the free Discord server which has loads of very capable DFS players and I am sure you will find an opinion that will give you the confirmation bias that most people seek. If you need additional help then reach out to @WeWantPicks on Twitter, or you can shoot me questions as well if you like @WebGuyWWP. Thanks for reading, see you guys next week.

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