At 37, Derek Brunson appears to be a rare late bloomer in mixed martial arts. The veteran contender can tie his UFC career-high winning streak at five on Saturday should he defeat Darren Till in the main event of UFC Fight Night: Brunson vs. Till. The clash of ranked middleweight contenders closes the curtain on the MMA docket from the Apex facility in Las Vegas. The main UFC fight card is set for 4 p.m. ET. The UFC's apparent strategy to use Brunson as a gatekeeper backfired, as the surging veteran defeated celebrated prospects in four consecutive fights to emerge as a title-contender and surge to No. 5 in the rankings.
Till is a -160 favorite (risk $160 to win $100), while Brunson is listed at +140 in the latest UFC Fight Night: Brunson vs. Till odds at Caesars Sportsbook. In the co-main event, ranked heavyweights share the spotlight as No. 13-ranked Tom Aspinall (-250) takes on No. 14-ranked Sergey Spivak (+200). Before settling any UFC Fight Night picks of your own, make sure you see the MMA predictions from SportsLine combat sports analyst Kyle Marley.
Marley won the first-ever "ToutMaster" UFC betting contest sponsored by MMAOddsBreaker and appears regularly on multiple MMA betting and daily Fantasy shows. He watches every single fight for every professional MMA card and does extensive research before each event.
Over the past 30 months, $100 bettors who have followed Marley's picks are up more than $14,000. The accomplished MMA analyst has now connected on 34 of his last UFC 58 main-event selections, a stretch that includes a streak of five straight underdogs in 2020.
Just last week, Marley told SportsLine members to back Daniel Rodriguez (+130) against Kevin Lee (-150) in a matchup of welterweight contenders on the main card. Lee came out strong in the first round, but Rodriguez dominated the final two frames to win a unanimous decision. Anyone who has followed Marley is way up.
Now, with UFC Fight Night: Brunson vs. Till looming, Marley has studied the matchups from every angle and released his selections for the card. Those picks are only available here.
UFC Fight Night: Brunson vs. Till preview
Marley knows both fighters will have a sense of urgency as they battle for a coveted title shot in a top-heavy middleweight division. Brunson (22-7) already has shared the Octagon with many of the game's luminaries, but historically has come out on the short end against world-class competition.
His resume includes losses to former champions such as Anderson Silva and Robert Whittaker. His most recent loss came at the hands of Adesanya in 2018, but the 37-year-old has since won four straight against quality opponents to enter the title picture.
Brunson knocked out previously-unbeaten prospect Edmen Shahbazyan in August of last year and followed up that effort with a dominant five-round decision against red-hot prospect Kevin Holland in March.
Even so, he faces a daunting task against Till (18-3-1), who is unproven at middleweight but whose lethal striking and high fight IQ led him to a title shot at welterweight. The 28-year-old British fighter needs a win to remain relevant at middleweight following a lopsided decision loss to Whittaker in July of last year. His lone win in the division came in a split decision against Kelvin Gastelum in November 2019. You can only see who to back here.
UFC Fight Night: Brunson vs. Till predictions
We'll share one of Marley's UFC Fight Night selections here: He is backing Luigi Vendramini (+115) to upset Paddy Pimblett (-135) in a clash of lightweight prospects.
Pimblett (16-3) is already a star of sorts with British MMA fans, as he has made a name for himself with his boisterous personality and prowess in the Octagon as part of the popular Cage Warriors promotion, which also served as the grooming grounds for Conor McGregor. The 26-year-old fighter reportedly turned down previous offers from the UFC but recently decided it was time to show his skills in the sport's most revered promotion.
Vendramini (9-2) is a rugged Brazilian prospect who has shown a strong stand-up game to go along with submissions. The 25-year-old joined the UFC with an 8-0 record, but has won just once in three outings with the promotion. He is looking to bounce back from a majority-decision loss to Fares Ziam in June.
"I expect Vendramini to be the better and much more powerful striker and he is live for a knockout. He has grappling chops of his own and he looks like the better wrestler, so maybe he can keep this on the feet," Marley told SportsLine.
How to make UFC Fight Night: Brunson vs. Till picks
Marley also has strong picks for Brunson vs. Till and every other bout on the UFC Fight Night card. He's also backing one fighter who has "some of the best boxing in the division" to get a knockout win. Those selections are only available at SportsLine.
Who wins Brunson vs. Till? And how exactly does each fight end? Visit SportsLine now to get detailed picks on every fight at UFC Fight Night, all from the incomparable expert who's up more than $14,000 on MMA in the past 30 months, and find out.
UFC Fight Night: Brunson vs. Till odds, fight card
Derek Brunson (+140) vs. Darren Till (-160)
Tom Aspinall (-250) vs. Sergey Spivak (+200)
Alex Perez (-300) vs. Matt Schnell (+250)
Alex Morono (-155) vs. David Zawada (+135)
Modestas Bukauskas (-155) vs. Khalil Rountree (+135)
Paddy Pimblet (-135) vs. Luigi Vendramini (+115)
Ji Yeon Kim (-115) vs. Molly McCann (-105)
Jack Shore (-475) vs. Liudvik Sholinian (+380)
Charles Jourdain (-185) vs. Julian Erosa (+165)
Marc-Andre Barriault (-150) vs. Dalcha Lungiambula (+130)
Jonathan Martinez (-170) vs. Marcelo Rojo (+150)