UFC Fight Night Betting Pick: Gregor Gillespie vs Diego Ferreira

This one here is a fun fight that looks like it is going to come down to top control vs BJJ.

The reason I wanted to attack this fight and betting line early on in the week is because I think the fight is more or less, cut and dry if expressions are your thing. Gregor Gillespie has some of if not the best takedowns in the UFC’s Lightweight Division and Diego Ferreira was taken down multiple times in his last fight among other occurrences in his career.

That is how you beat this guy. Most of his opponents can’t because of the forward pressure he puts on and even when some do, they regret it because they are now on the mat with a legit Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt.

I don’t think Gregor wants to strike in this fight and I believe his high level wrestling will get him on top of Ferreira.

Okay. Now what?

That’s where we will begin in a moment. BetOnline.AG has some of the most valuable betting lines available each and every week and they even release them before the vast majority of online sportsbooks.

That’s where I found today’s betting odds for the Lightweight matchup between Gregor Gillespie and Brazil’s Diego Ferreria.

Gregor Gillespie (-175) vs Diego Ferreira (+150)

We were sitting at (-190) for the American favorite here a few days ago so the money is coming in on the Brazilian. I get it but I still think you are relying on your guy to get a submission to win the bet.

How many UFC Lightweight fights end in a submission? We are at 19%.

Submitting a fighter who has spent most of his career fighting time on the mat and never been submitted before has to drop this number down to at least 12%.

Diego has a black belt and has been doing Jiu Jitsu for longer than Gregor and I don’t want to do this but to be very fair we will raise it back up to a 15% chance that Diego Ferreira submits Gregor Gillespie on Saturday night.

If that is really the only route to victory you see for Diego then you are 18% down on the sportsbooks. They have a huge edge with Ferreira here and they are loving the money coming in on him. You’re betting on wrestling vs BJJ and I’m sorry.

I’m a BJJ guy myself. I love it much more than wrestling because it isn’t so much about control but finishing the fight, match, or roll but wrestling is the bet.

If Gregor was still a little wet behind the satellites in his submission defense/BJJ learning curve then yea, I think Diego Ferreira is a solid play here. The thing is that Gregor has been training submission defense, primarily from opponents guards and half guards for a long time.

Please Note:
Someone of his caliber of wrestling is highly highly unlikely to get swept because of his incredible base and center of gravity developed over his entire life. Greg has just one loss on his professional record and that was in his last fight when Kevin Lee came close to kicking his head clean off.

Greg is sloppy with his jab return and doesn’t bring it back to his face or temple. Kevin Lee was all over this landing the right hand over it. Once Lee had the timing, he began to throw the slight overhand right harder.

Right about then, he cracked Greg with one on the temple literally turning his face towards what was coming next. Kevin just took a step after the right hand so he didn’t have to switch and let go of a left high kick that badly concussed the New Yorker.

  • Greg took an extended period off which is a great thing for him and 19 months sounds like enough to recover from a concussion so that’s good. It isn’t good, though, that he hasn’t competed in almost two years.
  • Diego Ferreira has remained active and just fought a very high level fight albeit in a losing effort opposite Benny Dariush only a few months ago. That will work heavily in the favor of the Brazilian.

Stylistically, though, I can’t get over the fact that I think Gregor will be able to take down and control Diego Ferreira on the mat for most of this fight. Now, from there, we gave the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt a 15% chance at getting a submission.

We will give him another 15% that he keeps the fight on the feet long enough to win a striking battle with Gillespie. I don’t think that will happen either but this is MMA, this is a fight, and we have to account for it.

There is your 30%. The betting odds say he is about 33% to win so there is no edge.

I like a unit here on the wrestler.

I don’t want to bet too much because he is coming off of a long layoff and a knockout like that has the potential to change a fighter or at least their perspective and mindset forever.

We have an edge and the line might continue to move in our favor so wait a couple of days before you make your play.

The Bet

In Conclusion

Gregor Gillespie will make his long-awaited return after suffering the first defeat of his professional career when Kevin Lee sent his cranium to Kalamazoo with a shin to chin connection for the ages.

Kevin Lee is a very explosive and powerful striker and he is also very big for the 155 pound division having gone through some horrendous weight cuts to make the limit in the past.

Diego Ferreira is not large for the weight class. He will be bigger than Gregor, and the Brazilian also doesn’t throw with a lot of power.

I think the UFC matchmakers are doing Greg a favor here.

He is coming off of such a devastating knockout and they give him a guy where voluminous punches or a submission is his biggest worry. Ferreira has made a lot of his win money taking advantage of tiring fighters or if we give him his credit, fighters he pushed until they ran out of gas.

Gregor Gillespie has always shown to have an outstanding gas tank, though, and that helps me eliminate him gassing from Diego’s possible paths to victory. It is submission or bust for me and I don’t think Gillespie is going to get caught here.

He may spend a minute or so inside of a guillotine but I don’t think he will tap and history tells us that most people do not.

Mike Pruitt / Author

Mike has been covering sports professionally since 2017 but on the amateur scene for 25 years since when he was 12. Before the internet changed the world, he would keep detailed statistical box scores of NFL and NBA contests, write recaps, and voluntarily commentate games and fights alone in his room. Mike's military experience, Bachelors Degree, and employment thereafter were always rooted in engineering, science, and teaching. Now he enjoys being able to express himself through writing about football, golf, and car racing among other sports but most of all fighting as his life has been rooted in mixed martial arts including competing and teaching for the past 15 years.