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Veteran middleweight contender Jared Cannonier promises another exciting performance Saturday when he meets rising prospect Nassourdine Imavov in the main event of UFC Fight Night: Cannonier vs. Imavov. Their five-round showdown, which carries title-shot implications, will anchor the main UFC fight card (8 p.m. ET) from the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville. Cannonier, who is a former title challenger, has received criticism in the past for a low work rate in the cage. But he turned the tables on that narrative in his last fight against fellow contender Marvon Vettori as he landed 241 significant strikes to set the middleweight record in a five-round fight. Cannonier can gain leverage toward another title shot by beating the No. 7-ranked Imavov, who is seeking his first career victory against a top-five opponent.

Imavov is a -125 favorite (risk $125 to win 100), while Cannonier is priced at +105 in the latest UFC Fight Night: Cannonier vs. Imavov odds. In the co-main event, veteran light heavyweight sluggers square off when Dustin Jacoby (-220) takes on Dominick Reyes (+180). Before locking in any UFC Fight Night: Cannonier vs. Imavov picks, make sure you see the MMA predictions and betting advice from SportsLine expert Daniel Vithlani

From breaking down film and following fighters and their camps closely, to tracking sharp action and betting market signals, Vithlani covers the breadth of the MMA betting landscape top to bottom. He also trains amateur boxers and speaks regularly with MMA fighters to understand the sport's nuances. 

Vithlani made his SportsLine debut in January 2023 and swept the main card for UFC 283 with a 5-0 record and has been a consistent winner ever since. Over the past 12 UFC pay-per-view events, Vithlani has gone 8-4 on main-event picks and his main-card selections in that span have netted his followers a profit of more than $1,500. 

His highlights include predicting an upset for Sean O'Malley (+210) against Aljamain Sterling (-250) at UFC 292 as part of a 4-1 main card and his UFC 299 winners included underdog selections on Poirier (+190) against Saint Denis (-230) and Michael Page (+110) against Kevin Holland (-130). Anyone who has followed him has seen massive returns. 

Now, with UFC Fight Night: Cannonier vs. Imavov on deck, Vithlani has studied the card from top to bottom and released his top selections. You can only see his picks and analysis at SportsLine

UFC Fight Night: Cannonier vs. Imavov preview 

Cannonier (17-6) is a late bloomer by MMA standards. He didn't make his professional debut until age 27 and also made numerous career adjustments before emerging as a title challenger at middleweight. Cannonier started his UFC career at heavyweight before he moved down to light heavyweight. He went 2-3 at light heavyweight and appeared to have a ceiling of a journeyman at best before choosing to move down one more division to middleweight.

The Dallas native's dedication to disciplined training and nutrition paid off. Now 40, he is 7-2 at middleweight, with his only losses coming to former champions Adesanya and Robert Whittaker. He also has a split-decision win over Sean Strickland, who went on to win the title after their fight. 

Unfortunately for Cannonier, his listless performance against Adesanya for the title at UFC 276 in July 2022 hampered his chances for immediately rejoining the title picture. However, a dominant performance Saturday would put him on the short list of viable title contenders behind Adesanya, Whittaker and Strickland. 

Imavov (13-4-1) is a slick athlete with a polished skillset who won four of his first five appearances. The UFC brass appeared high on him as a prospect and booked him in a Fight Night main event against Strickland in January last year. Strickland dominated the fight from wire to wire to win a unanimous decision before beating Adesanya for the belt last September. 

However, following a no-contest against veteran Chris Curtis, Imavov got back on track with a majority-decision win against fellow prospect Roman Dolidze in February. You can only see who to back at UFC Fight Night here.

UFC Fight Night predictions 

We'll share one of Vithlani's UFC Fight Night selections here: He is supporting Raul Rosas Jr. to get past Ricky Turcios (+190) in a matchup of bantamweight prospects on the main card.

Rosas (8-1) memorably made his debut in December 2022 as the youngest fighter in UFC history at age 18 and 2 months. He defeated low-level journeyman Jay Perrin that night but was dominated in his next matchup by fellow prospect Christian Rodriguez. What's more, Rosas, who is now 19, saw his once-soaring stock take a hit in February when he withdrew from a fight in Mexico against Turcios about 5 minutes before the combatants were scheduled to enter the cage.

Turcios (12-3) is a versatile prospect who has gone 2-1 in three UFC appearances following a strong run in the Fury FC promotion. The 31-year-old Texan is coming off a decision win against fading journeyman Kevin Natividad in his last appearance.

"Turcios can scramble on the ground, but if he is happy trying to fight off his back, he is going to stay there. Rosas will out-grapple him to a win," Vithlani told SportsLine. See who else to back here.

How to make UFC Fight Night picks  

Vithlani has strong picks for Cannonier vs. Imavov and other bouts on the UFC Fight Night card. He's also backing a fighter who "is a highly technical kickboxer" to emerge with a dominant victory. His picks and analysis are only available at SportsLine

Who wins UFC Fight Night: Cannonier vs. Imavov, and how exactly does each fight end? Visit SportsLine now to get detailed picks on UFC Fight Night, all from the MMA expert who profited more than $1,500 on his UFC main-card picks in 2023, and find out. 

UFC Fight Night odds, fight card

See full UFC Fight Night picks, predictions, and best bets here.
Jared Cannonier (+105) vs. Nassourdine Imavov (-125)
Dominick Reyes (+180) vs. Dustin Jacoby (-220)
Raul Rosas (-230) vs. Ricky Turcios (+190)
Bruno Ferreira (-270) vs. Dustin Stolzfus (+220)
Julian Marquez (-130) vs. Zach Reese (+110)
Punahale Soriano (+160) vs. Miguel Baeza (-190)
Thiago Moises (+105) vs. Ludovit Klein (-125)
Carlos Prates (-230) vs. Charles Radtke (+190)
Brad Katona (-600) vs. Jesse Butler (+400)
Daniel Marcos (-115) vs. John Castaneda (-105)
Eduarda Moura (-160) vs. Denise Gomes (+130)
Cody Stamann (+220) vs. Taylor Lapilus (-270)