UFC Fight Night Andre Fialho vs Joaquin Buckley Picks and Predictions: Buckley Starts Strong After Division Switch

Joaquin Buckley is moving from middleweight to welterweight and while his future in the division remains to be seen, he should be able to take care of Andre Fialho. Find out why in our UFC betting picks and predictions below.

Last Updated: May 20, 2023 8:20 AM ET Read Time: 4 min
Joaquin Buckley UFC Fight Night
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Andre Fialho welcomes Joaquin Buckley to the welterweight division in a three-round bout as a featured undercard attraction of this weekend’s UFC Fight Night card at The Apex in Las Vegas.

With his prospects at middleweight fizzling out, Buckley is squeezing down to welterweight to start a new chapter. Waiting for him is potential spoiler Fialho, who is also in dire need of a win. 

UFC odds have Buckley as a -215 favorite. Fialho is a +185 underdog.

Here are our free betting picks for Buckley vs. Fialho at UFC Fight Night in Las Vegas.

Andre Fialho vs Joaquin Buckley fight odds

Andre Fialho vs Joaquin Buckley method of victory odds

Method of Victory Andre Fialho Joaquin Buckley
To win by KO/TKO +320 +150
To win by Points +650 +330
To win by Submission +2,200 +2,200
Draw +5,000 +5,000

Odds courtesy of FanDuel Sportsbook on May 20, 2023.

Andre Fialho vs Joaquin Buckley picks

Click on each prediction to jump to the full analysis.

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Andre Fialho vs Joaquin Buckley betting preview

After taking losses to Nassourdine Imavov and Chris Curtis, Buckley has decided to call it quits at middleweight. Prior to 2018, Buckley competed at welterweight, posting an 8-2 record with five finishes.

Since he joined the UFC, he’s been an all-action fighter who gives it his all and doesn’t go down without a fight. Buckley is best known for his awe-inspiring KO of Impa Kasanganay, a feat that made him a viral sensation.

Buckley is an aggressive striker who utilizes a lot of movement and hand speed. Even though he held his own against formidable middleweights, he never seemed that big at 185. He was taken down frequently, and for as much damage as he doled out, he often got blasted out against fighters who could take his power and strike with him.

As long as the weight cut won’t compromise his conditioning, Buckley should fit in well at welterweight. In terms of this particular fight, he has an opponent with awful defense and multiple stoppage losses. Doubts linger surrounding Buckley moving down in weight and remaining effective, which is normal under most circumstances, but Fialho isn’t equipped to validate those doubts.

Fialho is known for his power, though he hasn’t exhibited it lately. Like Buckley, he’s coming off consecutive losses to Jake Matthews and Muslim Salikhov that were becoming one-sided before he was ultimately stopped. In those moments where Fialho can get into a striking rhythm and find an opening, he can be downright destructive as he has heavy hands and throws with bad intentions.

He does take his share of punishment to set up his offense. Of his five fights in the UFC, he’s been outlanded in significant strikes four times. While he is a kill-or-be-killed fighter, that might actually work to his advantage as Buckley often charges ahead to create some offensive opportunities. 

Even though he’s as rough as they get, Fialho can turn out Buckley’s lights with the right shot. As long as he survives the initial onslaught, Fialho presents a danger if Buckley suddenly runs out of gas. While both of these fighters are coming off multiple losses, Fialho may be less inclined to fight conservatively, giving him an unexpected advantage.

Andre Fialho vs Joaquin Buckley tale of the tape

Andre Fialho   Joaquin Buckley
29 Age 29
6-foot-0 Height 5-foot-8
170 lbs Weight 185 lbs
74 inches Reach 76 inches
16-6-1 (13 KO) Record 15-6 (11 KO)

Andre Fialho vs Joaquin Buckley UFC prediction and best bet

Buckley should win, but it’s not a lock. Both of these fighters have been chin-checked in a big way recently, and while Fialho looks to be a sacrificial lamb on paper, he’s got a puncher’s chance.

The totality of Buckley’s skill set and his size advantage should be enough to seal the deal, but this could go either way. We’ll pick Buckley to win this battle of big strikers.

Prediction: Joaquin Buckley moneyline (-215 at DraftKings)

Because Fialho gets outlanded often and was out-hustled by a 38-year-old Salikhov before getting stopped, we like Buckley to get a stoppage.

If Buckley can get on Fialho early, and his opponent’s leaky defense will certainly allow him to, this could be a fast night. He could get caught, but we’ll bank on Buckley slumping Fialho before he eats something wicked.

Pick: Joaquin Buckley by KO/TKO/DQ in Round 1 (+225 at DraftKings)

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