UFC Fight Night Zellhuber vs Prado Odds, Picks, and Predictions: Pick Against Prado in Battle of One-Loss Lightweights

Daniel Zellhuber is the more balanced fighter compared to Francisco Prado, but Prado's punching power must be respected, especially early in the fight. However, our UFC betting picks believe Zellhuber will dictate a slow tempo.

Feb 24, 2024 • 07:28 ET • 4 min read
Daniel Zellhuber UFC
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

Lightweights Daniel Zellhuber and Francisco Prado face off in what could be the fight of the night as the featured undercard attraction of tonight’s UFC Fight Night card. This high-stakes battle takes place Saturday, February 24, at Arena CDMX in Mexico City, Mexico.

This pair of once-beaten fighters hope to give the hometown crowd a war, and it will take everything the resourceful Zellhuber has to turn away the vicious Prado.

UFC odds have Zellhuber as a -275 favorite, and Prado is a +210 underdog. 

Here are my free picks for Zellhuber vs. Prado at UFC Fight Night.

Daniel Zellhuber vs Francisco Prado fight odds

Method of Victory Zellhuber Prado
To win outright -275 +210
To win by KO/TKO +225 +575
To win by points +175 +640
To win by submission +510 +1,350
Draw +2,500 +2,500

Odds courtesy of Bet99 on February 24, 2024.

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Zellhuber vs Prado picks

Fight prediction: Zellhuber moneyline

This matchup has the potential to be a brief encounter for one fighter or a straightforward victory for the other. Prado brings flair, while Zellhuber brings substance. Prado is known for his aggressive approach, high energy, and lethal striking, always aiming for a decisive finish. Zellhuber, on the other hand, tends to take some time to find his rhythm, making the first round pivotal. If Zellhuber can weather Prado's early storm, he is likely to secure a comfortable win.

Zellhuber boasts a more well-rounded skill set. He excels in striking, has a solid takedown game, and maintains sufficient endurance throughout the fight. Prado, on the other hand, tends to struggle if he doesn't finish his opponents early, as his cardio fades, leaving him gasping for air. Technically, Zellhuber holds the advantage with a more controlled style compared to Prado's unpredictable approach. Zellhuber should have little difficulty landing shots on Prado, who often trades blows recklessly and may become vulnerable if he tires.

However, Zellhuber's defensive prowess may not be foolproof, and escaping the first round unscathed is not guaranteed. Both fighters exhibit vulnerability, keeping their chins exposed. While Prado possesses greater knockout power, Zellhuber can leverage his reach and conditioning to control the distance, forcing Prado to take more risks in landing significant shots.

Anticipating Zellhuber to weather an initially aggressive Prado in the first round, I predict Zellhuber will face a fatigued Prado in the subsequent rounds, unable to replicate his early offensive. Therefore, my pick is Zellhuber.

Prediction: Zellhuber moneyline (-275 at Bet99)

Fight best bet: Over 2.5 rounds

I’m more confident about Zellhuber making it out of the first round than I am that he’ll win in a particular way. Prado is going to bring the offense for the duration of the bout, even if he does gas out, and Zellhuber’s defense is suspect enough that he could get caught by one of his wild shots. 

Zellhuber also won’t match Prado’s energy, and he’ll try to drag things out to expend his opponent’s reserves. He’ll do what he can to keep him on the outside, so plenty of leg kicks, jabs, and clinches when Prado starts closing the distance. He’ll make him work for every inch.

Prado has to overcome an eight-inch reach deficit against an opponent who knows how to use his reach. Once the fight does get on the inside, Zellhuber can grapple and reset, having Prado start all over as time goes by. Maybe Zellhuber can wear Prado down where he’ll want to put the pressure on him and try to get him out, but by that time, we’ll be close to the end of the bout anyway.

The best bet on this fight is that it goes over 2.5 rounds.

Pick: Over 2.5 rounds (-115 at Bet99)

Zellhuber vs Prado betting preview

“Golden Boy” Zellhuber has emerged as a prospect to watch at lightweight, and the 24-year-old Mexican is 4-1 in his last five, having recently submitted Christos Giagos Rodriguez last September. Prado blasted out fellow brawler Ottman Azaitar in his last bout, stopping him via ground and pound in the first round. For the sum of their parts, Zellhuber has more to offer, though Prado’s explosiveness cannot be denied.

We’ll see Zellhuber employ a volume approach as he lands 5.26 significant strikes per minute, staying busy and always utilizing his long reach. Prado throws the harder, more accurate blows as he lands 3.46 significant strikes per minute and lands at 50% accuracy compared to Zellhuber’s 39%. Another avenue Zellhuber can explore is taking Prado to the ground, boasting a meager 25% takedown defense rate in his two UFC fights.

To contrast their styles, Prado is a finisher who has an average fight time of nine minutes and thirty-three seconds with all his wins coming via finish, and Zellhuber tends to draw his fights out averaging beyond 13 minutes in the octagon.

So much of this comes down to Zellhuber keeping Prado away from him. For every moment Prado gets inside Zellhuber’s reach, his wild, winging shots could spell the end of the fight. It will take a strong defensive effort for Zellhuber, as well as some properly placed body shots and grappling sequences, to down his chaotic opponent.

Daniel Zellhuber vs Francisco Prado tale of the tape

Zellhuber   Prado
24 Age 21
6-foot-1 Height 5-foot-11
156 lbs Weight 156 lbs
77 inches Reach 69 inches
14-1 (7 KO) Record 12-1 (6 KO)

Not intended for use in MA.
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