One of the prelims at UFC Fight night 60 is a three-round featherweight bout between Nik Lentz and Levan Makashvili. According to the current betting lines available at 5Dimes Sportsbook, Lentz is a -475 favorite (bet $475 to win $100) while Makashvili is a +380 underdog (bet $100 to win $380). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened up Lentz at -305 and Makashvili at +225 and the public has bet up the line on Lentz. I like Lentz in the fight and agree with the line. Here’s why. Lentz (25-6-2, 1 NC) is one of the top-10 featherweights in the UFC. The 30-year-old American is 9-3-1, 1 NC in the UFC including a 4-1 mark as a featherweight. He has victories over the likes of Manny Gamburyan, Hacran Dias and Diego Nunes in his UFC career, as well as a competitive loss to top contender Chad Mendes. Lentz is a grinder who has excellent wrestling skills. He is able to use his strikes to close the distance, push his opponents against the fence, and get them to the mat, where he can control most fighters from top position. He isn’t much of a finisher, but he definitely has the ability to get a submission or a TKO if he gains a dominant position. His striking isn’t very good, but his wrestling is so good that it usually doesn’t matter. He also has excellent cardio and can keep up a strong pace for 15 minutes. He was originally set to fight Thiago Tavares in a rematch but after Tavares pulled out with an injury Lentz now faces short-notice replacement Makashvili, and it’s a fight he absolutely should win. Makashvili (6-1) is a featherweight prospect making his UFC debut on short notice against a top-1o fighter. The 26-year-old Georgian is a solid prospect who is skilled in all facets of the game. He has good wrestling and striking and considering he is only two years into his MMA career, he is still developing and will likely look better and better each fight. He has some issues with his activity rate, though, and going up against a guy who sets the type of pace that Lentz does, it could give him some problems. Makashvili is a promising featherweight prospect, but facing a solid veteran like Lentz on short notice is a bad situation. I just think Lentz is one of the best guys in the world at his weight class and I think he can really push the pace on Makashvili in this fight and grind out a clear-cut decision or even get a late submission or TKO stoppage. I really like Lentz in this fight and I don’t blame anyone who wants to stick him in their parlays this weekend.
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