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MMASucka’s UFC Vegas 59 Staff Picks

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Two champions will be crowned in tonight’s tournament finals of The Ultimate Fighter  30.

Our MMASucka staff picks are locked in as UFC Vegas 59, also titled UFC on ESPN 40, will begin in a few short hours today, August 6th from the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada. Six tightly-contested fights are set for the main card kicking off at 10:00pm ET (7:00pm PT) live on both ESPN for cable viewers and ESPN+ for subscribers.

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Stay tuned to MMASucka for live results of the entire UFC Vegas 59: Santos vs. Hill fight card.

Be sure to recap our staff picks from Friday night’s PFL 7 2022 event from New York City. Also, stay tuned this upcoming Tuesday for our Dana White’s Contender Series 49 staff picks from Las Vegas.

The Fights

Light heavyweights Thiago Santos and Jamahal Hill are looking to make the most in tonight’s possible 25-minute main event.

Brazil’s Santos will make his 24th octagon walk, a former TUF veteran himself having competed on Season 2 of Brazil’s version in 2013. The former title challenger hopes for a big victory having only one win in his last five fights coming over Johnny Walker in late 2021. Santos’s opponent, Hill, rides the momentum with two straight first-round knockouts over Jimmy Crute in December and Johnny Walker in February. Another impressive performance in what will be his second promotional main event would be just the ticket needed towards a shot at newly-crowned champion Jiri Prochazka.

A “Fight of the Night” could be expected in the co-main event as dangerous finishers Vicente Luque and Geoff Neal meet at 170 pounds. Luque looks to rebound after his four-fight finishing win streak was snapped by decision to Belal Muhammad in a five-round April main event. Neal avoided three losses in-a-row in his UFC 269 split-decision win over Santiago Ponzinibbio.

In addition, two winners will be crowned for The Ultimate Fighter 30 finale. In the flyweight tournament final, former Invicta FC fighter Brogan Walker will meet 26-year-old Juliana Miller. Meanwhile, Elevation Fight Team’s undefeated Zac Pauga will take on Mohammed Usman, the younger brother of welterweight champion Kamaru Usman, in the heavyweight tournament final.

See all of our picks for the UFC Vegas 59 main card further below.

Staff Picks

Staff picks in 2022 will follow the same set of rules from the 2021 season. Throughout the calendar year, staff picks will be composed of main card fights from both UFC and Bellator events. Main card fights and selected preliminary fights will be included for PFL MMA. Dana White’s Contender Series will be composed of the entire fight card.

The WINNER of staff picks in 2022 will have a choice between receiving a custom-made championship belt from ProAmBelts or a chain from Championship Chains. A winner is determined simply by the individual correctly picking the most victorious fighters at the year’s end. Nate Freeman secured his first victory with MMASucka in 2021 with a compiled record 243-136.

Who are the MMASucka staff picking to win at UFC Vegas 59: Santos vs. Hill?

Staff Records after Dana White’s Contender Series 48:

1. Nate Freeman: 152-75
2. Wesley Riddle: 151-76
3. Michael DeSantis: 149-78
4. Frazer Krohn: 146-81
5. William Dong: 144-83
6. Julio Monteros Jr.: 142-74
7. Jeremy Brand: 138-83
8. Chris Presnell: 135-86
9. Andrew Benjamin: 129-98
10. Mike Lynch: 123-74
11. Tim Wheaton: 121-66
12. Brandon Joint: 111-72
13. Ash Camyab: 105-77
14. Jack Goodwillie: 100-42
15. Brian Knight: 94-65
16. Coby Weinsier: 87-47
17. Chinyere Okafor: 72-38
18. Jacek Okninski: 69-54
19. Matt Bricker: 24-22
20. Joe Porter: 11-2
21. Roemello Reyes: 6-4

*Note – not all staff pick for every event*
*Note – PFL 7 2022 picks will be added to the above records NEXT weekend*


Ariane Lipski (14-7), -190
vs.
Priscila Cachoeira (11-4), +160

Catchweight
– 128.5 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: Lipski via Unanimous Decision
Wesley Riddle: Lipski via Unanimous Decision
Michael DeSantis: Lipski via Unanimous Decision
Andrew Benjamin: Cachoeira via Unanimous Decision
Frazer Krohn: Lipski via Round 3 SUB
Nate Freeman: Lipski via Split Decision
Tim Wheaton: Lipski via Unanimous Decision
Chris Presnell: Cachoeira via Unanimous Decision
Jacek Okninski: Lipski via Unanimous Decision
William Dong: Lipski via Unanimous Decision
Brian Knight: Lipski via Unanimous Decision
Roemello Reyes: Cachoeira via Unanimous Decision

Staff picking Lipski: 9
Staff picking Cachoeira: 3


Augusto Sakai (15-4-1), +240
vs.
Sergey Spivak (14-3), -285

Heavyweight Division
– 265 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: Spivak via Unanimous Decision
Wesley Riddle: Spivak via Split Decision
Michael DeSantis: Spivak via Unanimous Decision
Andrew Benjamin: Sakai via Round 1 TKO
Frazer Krohn: Spivak via Unanimous Decision
Nate Freeman: Spivak via Unanimous Decision
Tim Wheaton: Spivak via Unanimous Decision
Chris Presnell: Sakai via Unanimous Decision
Jacek Okninski: Sakai via Unanimous Decision
William Dong: Spivak via Round 1 TKO
Brian Knight: Spivak via Split Decision
Roemello Reyes: Spivak via Round 3 TKO

Staff picking Sakai: 3
Staff picking Spivak: 9


Brogan Walker (8-2), +105
vs.
Juliana Miller (3-1), -125

Flyweight Division
TUF 30 Tournament Finale
– 125 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: Miller via Round 2 SUB
Wesley Riddle: Walker via Unanimous Decision
Michael DeSantis: Walker via Unanimous Decision
Andrew Benjamin: Walker via Unanimous Decision
Frazer Krohn: Walker via Unanimous Decision
Nate Freeman: Miller via Split Decision
Tim Wheaton: Walker via Unanimous Decision
Chris Presnell: Walker via Unanimous Decision
Jacek Okninski: Walker via Unanimous Decision
William Dong: Walker via Unanimous Decision
Brian Knight: Miller via Unanimous Decision
Roemello Reyes: Walker via Split Decision

Staff picking Walker: 9
Staff picking Miller: 3


Mohammed Usman (8-2), +235
vs.
Zac Pauga (6-0), -280

Heavyweight Division
TUF 30 Tournament Finale
– 265 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: Pauga via Unanimous Decision
Wesley Riddle: Pauga via Unanimous Decision
Michael DeSantis: Pauga via Round 2 TKO
Andrew Benjamin: Usman via Unanimous Decision
Frazer Krohn: Usman via Round 2 TKO
Nate Freeman: Pauga via Unanimous Decision
Tim Wheaton: Usman via Round 2 TKO
Chris Presnell: Pauga via Round 1 TKO
Jacek Okninski: Pauga via Round 1 TKO
William Dong: Pauga via Round 2 TKO
Brian Knight: Pauga via Round 3 TKO
Roemello Reyes: Pauga via Unanimous Decision

Staff picking Usman: 3
Staff picking Pauga: 9


Vicente Luque (21-8-1), -180
vs.
Geoff Neal (14-4), +155

Welterweight Co-Main Event
– 170 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: Luque via Unanimous Decision
Wesley Riddle: Luque via Round 2 TKO
Michael DeSantis: Luque via Unanimous Decision
Andrew Benjamin: Luque via Unanimous Decision
Frazer Krohn: Luque via Round 2 SUB
Nate Freeman: Luque via Split Decision
Tim Wheaton: Luque via Round 2 TKO
Chris Presnell: Luque via Split Decision
Jacek Okninski: Luque via Round 2 TKO
William Dong: Luque via Unanimous Decision
Brian Knight: Neal via Split Decision
Roemello Reyes: Luque via Round 3 TKO

Staff picking Luque: 11
Staff picking Neal: 1


Thiago Santos (22-10), +260
vs.
Jamahal Hill (10-1, 1 NC), -315

Light Heavyweight Main Event
– 205 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: Hill via Round 2 TKO
Wesley Riddle: Hill via Round 3 TKO
Michael DeSantis: Hill via Round 2 TKO
Andrew Benjamin: Hill via Split Decision
Frazer Krohn: Hill via Unanimous Decision
Nate Freeman: Hill via Round 2 TKO
Tim Wheaton: Hill via Round 4 TKO
Chris Presnell: Santos via Unanimous Decision
Jacek Okninski: Hill via Unanimous Decision
William Dong: Hill via Unanimous Decision
Brian Knight: Hill via Round 4 TKO
Roemello Reyes: Hill via Round 2 TKO

Staff picking Santos: 1
Staff picking Hill: 11

*Fight odds from DraftKings*

UFC VEGAS 59 FEATURED IMAGE:
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Wesley Riddle is a 28-year-old writer out of Harrisonburg, Virginia and a 2018 graduate from Roanoke College in Salem, Virginia, having obtained a B.S. in Health & Physical Education. Watching the draw between Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard from 2011 sparked his interest in the sport of mixed martial arts. He created "All That MMA" on Twitter, which came to birth in December of 2013. He would join with MMASucka in the later quarter of 2016. Some of Riddle's hobbies include music, playing golf, watching horror movies, and working with non-profit organizations throughout his community. You can follow him on Twitter at @AllThatMMA or @WesleyRiddleMMA, and on Instagram @WesleyRiddle.

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