Two of the greatest 185lb fighters in the history of the UFC will meet once again in the Octagon on Saturday night to decide the true king of the middleweight division, and as always, we have you covered with all the betting action.
All odds featured are available at BetMGM – where you can currently grab a risk-free bet worth up to $1000.
Featured Undercard Bet: Roxanne Modafferi to defeat Casey O’Neil +350
One of the most beloved female fighters on the UFC roster and a bonafide pioneer of the sport of MMA, Roxanne Modafferi will make her final walk to the Octagon on Saturday to bring the curtain down on a nearly two-decade-long career inside the cage.
In her final Octagon bow, The Happy Warrior will take on surging Scotting flyweight prospect, Casey O’Neil. O’Neil has enjoyed a perfect start to her UFC career thus far, winning all three of her fights by way of finish, including a victory over Antonina Shevchenko for which she was awarded Performance of the Night honours.
While this certainly seems to be a stern test for Modaferri as she exits the sport, the veteran is no stranger to an upset. Amazingly, Modaferri has entered as the betting underdog in every single one of her UFC appearances and has pulled out the upset on a number of occasions.
- UFC FN 184: Defeated Andrea Lee +260
- UFC FN 149: Defeated Antonina Shevchenko +275
- UFC 246: Defeated Maycee Barber +700
The unassuming Modaferri has been counted out repeatedly in her MMA career but has consistently exceeded expectations and at +350 and with a penchant for upsetting the odds, she could be worth an investment.
Featured Main card Bet: Derrick Lewis to defeat Tai Tuivasa -210
Everyone loves an underdog. And, coincidentally, everyone also loves heavyweights. I mean, who wouldn’t love seeing some of the largest athletes in the sport throw down in the middle of the Octagon.
When it comes to the big guys, you are statistically more likely to see a fight that ends in a finish, just look at the total percentage of UFC fights that end via knockout by weight class.
- Heavyweight: 49.8%
- Light Heavyweight: 42.9%
- Middleweight: 35.8%
- Welterweight: 31.9%
- Lightweight: 27.2%
- Featherweight: 26.1%
- Bantamweight: 27.4%
- Flyweight: 22.7%
So, when noted KO artists Tai Tuivasa and Derrick Lewis meet in the Octagon we’re almost guaranteed a finish right? Well, the oddsmakers certainly think so. At the time of writing this article, a bet that the fight will not reach the judges’ scorecards currently sitting around -450.
Given the form that both fighters are in, it’s hard to deny that a KO is likely. Tuivasa enters the cage on Saturday riding a four-fight UFC win streak with all four coming inside the opening two rounds.
Likewise, Lewis has returned to form following a disappointing loss to Cyril Gane last year with a knockout win over heavyweight prospect Chris Daukaus.
However, while you might think that given 15 minutes locked inside an Octagon that two 265lb knockout artists would be able to find a finish; if Lewis versus Ngannou has taught us anything it is that heavyweight clashes often end in one of two ways. Either the fans are treated to a spectacular finish or an arduous drawn-out slog. (Or both in the case of Frank Mir vs Mirko Cro Cop.)
So with all that being said, do not be surprised if Lewis incorporates his seldom-utilised offensive wrestling game to neutralise the striking of Tuivasa and earn his victory by way of the judges’ scorecards. And with odds as high as +750 for Lewis to win by decision, it could definitely be worth a shot.
Featured Main Event Bet: Israel Adesanya to defeat Robert Whittaker (-250)
Rarely is it so clear that a division contains not just one, but two fighters, who are seemingly so far beyond their contemporaries in the weight class that they deserve to be in a league of their own.
When Israel Adesanya and Robert Whittaker first met inside the Octagon back in 2019, Whittaker was the established UFC champion, whereas Israel was the contender who had cleaned out the division en-route to his title shot.
At UFC 243, the defending champion Whittaker would enter the Octagon as an +105 underdog, before being stopped three minutes into the second round, in just the third loss of his UFC career.
Since then Whittaker has been on a warpath back up the divisional rankings, earning three solid wins against fellow contenders:
- July 2020: Defeated Darren Till (-125)
- October 2020: Defeated Jarod Cannonier (EVS)
- April 2021: Defeated Kelvin Gastelum (-250)
However, despite his success at 185lbs, Whittaker enters the rematch against Adesanya on Saturday as an even bigger underdog than he was in the first fight with the former champion currently sitting around +250.
Despite failing in his attempt to join the UFC’s Champ Champ fraternity with a surprise loss to Jan Blachowicz at UFC 259, Israel Adesanya position at the helm of the middleweight division seems no less secure heading into Saturday night.
As one of the most dynamic strikers ever to enter the Octagon, Adesanya possesses the tools to completely frustrate his opponents, which then often provides the necessary opening to deliver the knockout blow.
If Whittaker can utilise his surprisingly efficient wrestling game there is a great chance that he can make the rematch more competitive than the first bout was, but ultimately Izzy’s defence, movement, and ringcraft will prove to be too much and the champion will leave the Octagon with his coveted title in tow.
Though a straight bet on Adesanya continuing his reign will likely not make you rich at -250, some better action can be found betting on the Nigerian to pick up a late stoppage, with a fourth-round finish currently sitting at an eye-watering +1800.
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