UFC 301 Betting Odds: Pantoja vs. Erceg Predictions And More

UFC 301 Betting Odds: Pantoja vs. Erceg Predictions And More

The UFC 301 odds for the upcoming event in Brazil are live at the best UFC betting sites! In this article, I highlight the latest lines and frame my betting strategy for the highly anticipated card.

Brazil has been an MMA factory, producing some of the sport’s biggest stars in the UFC. It is about time that the rabid MMA fan base in the country receives a fight card of this magnitude.

My Pantoja vs. Erceg predictions and picks underscore the UFC 301 betting card. Below, I check out the latest prices for this flyweight showdown, courtesy of BetOnline, and delve into two more fights in Rio de Janeiro.

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Steve Erceg vs. Alexandre Pantoja Odds, Prediction, and Betting Pick

The following UFC 301 betting odds are courtesy of BetOnline:

  • Alexandre Pantoja (-188)
  • Steve Erceg (+164)

34-year-old Brazilian Alexandre Pantoja (27-5-0) is the odds-on favorite to defeat Steve Erceg (12-1-0) at UFC 301. Currently, at BetUS, the local fighter has an implied probability of around 65% to oust Erceg on home soil and retain the flyweight title.

Pantoja’s odds of beating Erceg have dropped over the last two weeks. On April 18, Pantoja had over a 70% probability at -240 odds to defeat Erceg. There have been no negative updates from Pantoja’s camp to indicate that he’s worse off than he was back then.

Betting apps and sites have most likely witnessed an increase in money backing Erceg. That is the only cause of the shift in the UFC 301 odds for this fight. In a recent pre-fight interview, Pantoja said that he isn’t overlooking Erceg:

“He [made] a good, good statement,” Pantoja said about Erceg’s knockout of Matt Schnell in March. “That’s why the UFC is thinking it’s interesting to give him a chance.”

The Australian fighter is getting a big opportunity in this one. He is going from an appearance on UFC Fight Night to the main event in Brazil. With limited talent to challenge Pantoja in the flyweight division, Erceg has a chance to make a name for himself in enemy territory.

Tale of the Tape & Fighting Styles

Steve ErcegFIGHTERSAlexandre Pantoja
126 lbsWeight125 lbs

Erceg enters the biggest fight of his career with only one loss on his resume. The Aussie is riding some momentum into this fight. However, does he have the talent to upset Pantoja in the toughest assignment of his career?

The 27-year-old from Perth is a well-balanced flyweight who prefers to be on the ground. While Erceg typically has an advantage there, he can make it work standing up as well.

Erceg has a solid mix of striking and grappling skills. He can win with the ground and pound, submission, or knock an opponent out. Preparing for him can ultimately be difficult then.

In 13 fights, Erceg has won two by (T)KO and six by submission. However, whatever he can do, Pantoja can do it better. Despite being 34 years old, he moves quickly and is pressuring constantly. Pantoja doesn’t waste any movements and gets to his spots fluidly.

Recent Performances & Form

Erceg has appeared on two UFC PPVs. He defeated David Dvorak by unanimous decision at UFC 289 on June 10, 2023, and then followed up with a similar win over Alessandro Costa at UFC 295 in November 2023.

Before getting the nod for this main event, Erceg ended Matt Schnell at 0:26 of Round 2 with a TKO. He jumps from UFC Fight Night in March to the main event of UFC 301! His most recent loss was in 2017 while he was in the Hex Fight Series1.

Erceg’s Last Five Fight Results:

  • WIN vs. Matt Schnell via KO/TKO (March 2, 2024)
  • WIN vs. Alessandro Costa via decision (November 11, 2023)
  • WIN vs. David Dvorak via decision (June 10, 2023)
  • WIN vs. Soichiro Hirai via submission (February 11, 2021)
  • WIN vs. Paul Loga via submission (October 30, 2021)

Pantoja is riding a five-fight win streak into UFC 301. He has dominated the flyweight division and doesn’t have any other current competition. Hence, Erceg received the promotion in Brazil.

In his last two efforts, Pantoja successfully defended the flyweight title with a unanimous decision victory over Brandon Royval and Brandon Moreno2.

Pantoja’s Last Five Fight Results:

  • WIN vs. Brandon Royval via decision (December 16, 2023)
  • WIN vs. Brandon Monero via decision (July 8, 2023)
  • WIN vs. Alex Perez via submission (July 30, 2022)
  • WIN vs. Brandon Royal via submission (August 21, 2021)
  • WIN vs. Manel Kape via decision (February 6, 2021)

Erceg vs. Pantoja Betting Pick

Until Pantoja gets too old and starts running out of stamina, he should continue to control the flyweight division. There isn’t any competition in his way at the moment.

I admit that Erceg has a puncher’s chance of winning this fight, but not enough to make him one of my UFC 301 best bets. The Aussie will likely be outclassed by a much more experienced and aggressive fighter.

The barrage of punches and onslaught of pressure from Pantoja should be too much to deal with in Brazil. Also, the home crowd in Rio de Janeiro should help. The Aussie has a big target on his back in this spot.

The Erceg vs. Pantoja odds dropping down to -188 make this a fairly decent value bet. I have the favorite winning by unanimous decision, so consider backing the hometown hero for your UFC 301 picks.

The Bet
Alexandre Pantoja

Jose Aldo vs. Jonathan Martinez Odds, Prediction, and Betting Pick

The following UFC 301 betting odds are courtesy of BetOnline:

  • Jose Aldo (+137)
  • Jonathan Martinez (-157)

Veteran Jose Aldo (31-8-0) takes on Jonathan Martinez (19-4-0) in the co-main event at UFC 301. The Brazilian crowd will be heavily behind Aldo in this fight.

The 37-year-old has compiled quite the UFC career and is regarded as one of the top MMA figures in the country. He will step into the Octagon for his first UFC assignment after a loss to Merab Dvalishvili in 2022.

The odds for this UFC 301 fight have shifted considerably over the last two weeks. Aldo was a slight -115 favorite, but he is now a considerable underdog at +130. The younger Martinez has asserted himself as the odds-on favorite.

At -157, Martinez has an implied probability of approximately 61% to defeat the Brazilian legend! Aldo recently disclosed that it was the right time to return to the UFC, though money has been pouring on Martinez to win.

Tale of the Tape & Fighting Style

Jose AldoFIGHTERSJonathan Martinez
136 lbsWeight136 lbs

Physically, this is an even match between Also and Martinez, with a slight height advantage for the latter, but weight and reach are dead even. The difference here is that Aldo is a fight away from retirement, while Martinez is in his prime!

Dana White had to throw serious money at Aldo to make him consider accepting this fight. Also, the UFC president likely convinced him that he could go out in Brazil in front of the home crowd rather than a boring loss to Dvalishvili on the mat.

Aldo will look to stand up and use leg kicks against Martinez. Conversely, his opponent is likely going to want to do the same. In addition to these two matching up physically, Aldo and Martinez employ a similar fighting style.

Both fighters love to stand up and use leg kicks to set up an opportunity to knock their opponent out. What’s more, they are solid defending leg kicks, so this is an incredibly interesting showdown.

Recent Performances & Form

As I noted, Aldo hasn’t stepped into the Octagon since a discouraging loss in 2022. Dvalishvili swarmed him on the ground and didn’t allow Aldo to move an inch. The Brazilian also went on a three-fight losing streak from May 11, 2019, to July 11, 2020.

He bounced back with three consecutive unanimous decision wins, including against Marlon Vera, but didn’t appear up to the task versus Dvalishvili3.

Aldo’s Last Five Fight Results:

  • LOSS vs. Merab Dvalishvili via decision (August 20, 2022)
  • WIN vs. Rob Font via decision (December 4, 2021)
  • WIN vs. Pedro Munhoz via decision (August 7, 2021)
  • WIN vs. Marlon Vera via decision (December 19, 2020)
  • LOSS vs. Petr Yan via KO/TKO (July 11, 2020)

Martinez is on a roll with six straight wins. He earned his spot against Aldo in the co-main event through hard work. During his winning streak, Martinez won two fights by KO/TKO, and the rest by a decision.

In his latest showing, he handled Adrian Yanez with a KO/TKO in Round 2 at UFC Fight Night in October4. It was another impressive performance from Martinez, who can really surge to prominence and become the most hated man in Brazil with a win.

Martinez’s Last Five Fight Results:

  • WIN vs. Adrian Yanez via KO/TKO (October 14, 2023)
  • WIN vs. Said Nurmagomedov via decision (March 11, 2023)
  • WIN vs. Cub Swanson via KO/TKO (October 15, 2022)
  • WIN vs. Vince Morales via decision (May 21, 2022)
  • WIN vs. Alejandro Perez via decision (February 26, 2022)

Aldo vs. Martinez Betting Pick

Aldo and Martinez are looking to achieve similar things at UFC 301. The 37-year-old veteran bantamweight fighter has made a living from using his superior leg kicks.

The same can be said for Martinez, who has emulated his style after Aldo. The problem for Martinez is if the Brazilian can block and check his leg kicks. If that happens, Aldo can win this and blow the roof off the place at Farmasi Arena!

That said, Martinez is in his prime and should be a step ahead of his opponent. Aldo is the favorite because of this fight happening in Brazil and it possibly being his last UFC fight. However, Martinez is the stronger overall fighter at this point in their careers, so he is still a solid bet at -157 if you missed out on the best value earlier in April.

The Bet
Jonathan Martinez

Alessandro Costa vs. Kevin Borjas Odds, Prediction, and Betting Pick

The following UFC 301 betting odds are courtesy of BetOnline:

  • Alessandro Costa (-133)
  • Kevin Borjas (+113)

The early prelims feature Brazilian flyweight Alessandro Costa (13-4-0) vs. Peru’s Kevin Borjas (9-2-0). Costa is coming off a hard-fought loss to Erceg, who is now in the main event at UFC 301.

The odds favor Costa as a -133 betting favorite. At this price, Costa has an implied probability of beating Borjas of just above 57%. However, this is down from mid-April’s odds of -150 in favor of Costa. There has been no significant news between either camp, so this move was squarely based on moving money the line.

Is Costa worth being one of your best bets for UFC 301? Let’s break everything down below.

Tale of the Tape & Fighting Styles

Alessandro CostaFIGHTERSKevin Borjas
125 lbsWeight125 lbs

Costa and Borjas match up well physically and in the Octagon. The 28-year-old Brazilian is a confident, explosive striker. Sometimes being too confident is an issue for Costa, however.

That said, when this guy is at his best and being patient, he’s a tough flyweight to crack. As a specialist in jiu-jitsu, Costa is fairly well-rounded and can win with a variety of methods.

If Costa can wait for his spots and trust the plan, he will be in good shape against Borjas. The 26-year-old Peruvian fighter got his big break at Dana White’s Contender Series 57 in August.

The heavy underdog used his dangerous striking to defeat Victor Dias. Borjas relies heavily on his strikes, as only one of his wins has been via a submission.

Recent Performances & Form

Borjas initially caught the eye of the UFC while he was in Inka FC. He won eight of nine fights before getting the call to fight at Dana White’s Contender Series. Borjas defeated Dias by unanimous decision in unlikely fashion.

However, he was unable to follow up the win with another victory. On November 11, 2023, Joshua Van brought Borjas back down to earth at UFC 2955.

Borjas’ Last Five Fight Results:

  • LOSS vs. Joshua Van via decision (November 11, 2023)
  • WIN vs. Victor Dias via decision (August 8, 2023)
  • WIN vs. Sebastiao da Silva Calixto via TKO (September 25, 2022)
  • WIN vs. Joseph Vieira da Silva via KO (July 10, 2022)
  • WIN vs. Manuel Bugueno via TKO (February 26, 2020)

Costa defeated Jimmy Flick at UFC Fight Night on June 17, 2023, to set up a chance to make his PPV debut at UFC 295. It was a difficult loss for Costa against Erceg, but there were opportunities for him to win the fight.

Despite the defeat, it was still a commendable performance against a rising flyweight in the UFC. The former Lux Fight League fighter has just two losses on his resume since losing in 20186.

Costa’s Last Five Fight Results:

  • LOSS vs. Steve Erceg via decision (November 11, 2023)
  • WIN vs. Jimmy Flick via KO/TKO (June 17, 2023)
  • LOSS vs. Amir Albazi via KO/TKO (December 17, 2022)
  • WIN vs. Carlos Gomez via KO/TKO (October 14, 2022)
  • WIN vs. Juan Andres Luna via decision (July 26, 2022)

Costa vs. Borjas Betting Pick

Costa missed a big chance to impress the UFC versus Erceg. He was unsuccessful, but it was a quality performance, nonetheless.

If Costa learns from his mistakes and sticks to his best tactics, Borjas isn’t expected to pose a threat. While he isn’t getting a more lucrative fight after losing to Erceg, this assignment is certainly more manageable.

Borjas scored a big upset over Dias, but his flaws were on display against Van. I expect Costa to look at the tape and do the same to Borjas, who struggled to adapt after his win at Dana White’s Contender Series 57.

I have Costa handicapped as a -160 to -165 favorite, so there is clear value on the 28-year-old Brazilian. For my UFC 301 fight predictions of this early prelim bout, I recommend siding with Costa in a bounce-back performance.

The Bet
Alessandro Costa

More Betting Odds For UFC 301

I hope that you enjoyed my UFC betting guide for UFC 301! In addition to these three UFC 301 predictions and picks, you can find the rest of the card for wagering at BetOnline. The sportsbooks also covers the picks I offer in my best MMA bets of the week, where I cover smaller promotions like ONE and Oktagon.

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  1. Steve Erceg MMA Profile | ESPN.com. Retrieved From “https://www.espn.com/mma/fighter/_/id/4997217/steve-erceg

  2. Alexandre Pantoj | ESPN.com. Retrieved From “https://www.espn.com/mma/fighter/history/_/id/2560746/alexandre-pantoja

  3. Jose Aldo MMA Fight History | ESPN.com. Retrieved From “https://www.espn.com/mma/fighter/history/_/id/2447641/jose-aldo

  4. Jonathan Martinez MMA Fight History | ESPN.com. Retrieved From “https://www.espn.com/mma/fighter/history/_/id/3928690/jonathan-martinez

  5. Kevin Borjas MMA Fight History | ESPN.com. Retrieved From “https://www.espn.com/mma/fighter/history/_/id/5144066/kevin-borjas

  6. Alessandro Costa MMA Fight History | ESPN.com. Retrieved From “https://www.espn.com/mma/fighter/history/_/id/5074121/alessandro-costa

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Kyle Eve
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Kyle Eve is a seasoned pro of The Sports Geek. Since joining the team in 2012, Kyle, has covered some of the biggest sporting events in the world. From the Super Bowl and World Series to March Madness, the NBA Finals, Kentucky Derby, and many more, Kyle has provided reliable analysis for millions of readers. After dedicating himself to hockey and football in high school, Kyle placed his first sports bet on his 18th birthday. Since then, he has spent his entire adult life devoting himself to becoming the best sports bettor and casino gambler possible. Kyle is from Windsor, ON, Canada

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