We are coming off of two very profitable weeks in UFC betting action including taking home more than 4.5 units profit for the week wagering 10 units in total.
When I started doing tape for this week’s action on Monday morning, I have to admit that it never felt more like a Monday. UFC 259 was, on paper, the highest level mixed martial arts fight card of all time.
On top of that, it was an incredibly exciting event. We saw the undefeated and overconfident Israel Adesanya come into his fight for the Light Heavyweight UFC title with Jan Blachowicz and get out struck on the feet by a slow Polish guy.
Polish Power closed the show 🇵🇱💪
— UFC (@ufc) March 12, 2021
I didn’t like how cool Izzy was with losing. It’s just a feeling I got but I think he definitely came up to 205 with pre loaded excuses and prepared to lose. What do I know, though? I just don’t understand how he can laugh off a loss and have all the best words in that moment.
Conor McGregor is the same way. As confident and talented as these two men are, they sure are good losers.
And the GOAT never lost in the Finals.
There is no comparison with Michael, though, as far as competitiveness goes.
Maybe I’m just doing my best Salty Sean here because Izzy was the only bet we lost on the night. I suppose I was on the wrong side with Aljamain Sterling but sometimes things work out for you.
Let’s just make this a Festivus for the rest of us and continue the airing of the grievances.
Neither are acceptable at all and Yan is the guy who pooped the bed here not Aljo, not Petr’s coaches, not referee Mark Smith. Petr is an amazing fighter but he can’t say spit here. That’s like driving down the wrong side of the highway, running a guy off the road, and then calling him a punk for accepting medical attention from the ambulance.
— UFC (@ufc) March 7, 2021
Not the perfect analogy but you guys get it. I know Sterling personally so I’ve been taking up for the guy. The public always wants things black and white. I guess it goes back to our evolutionary biology when we were too simple to see the gray area.
Life doesn’t work that way, though. From political issues to personal problems with your loved ones, things are complicated and there is no polar right and wrong all the time.
We also hit on the over 3.5 for (-130) in that fight. Yan was the best bet to make at (+100) but we got lucky this time as Aljo got the W. Now, we get to see a rematch and if Yan is that much better, he will prove it then.
BetOnline.AG has the betting odds for us this week. Let’s take a look at those and then cover some of the best bets you can make for UFC Fight Night Las Vegas.
Misha Cirkunov (-125) vs Ryan Spann (+105)
Misha is the more skilled fighter, more experienced, and the much more well rounded mixed martial artist in his matchup with the young and quite green Ryan Spann.
Spann has such a massive frame and quite a bit of athleticism to go along with it that you have to figure he is going to come into his own soon enough. He got the job with the company not because of his floor but his ceiling.
Most people including myself that he would be able to put away Sam Alvey but that freaking bet-wrecking redhead found a way to come out ahead on the judges’ scorecards via split decision.
One thing is for sure about Smilin’ Sam and that is that he will fight for your money. That one hurt as we took Spann on a method of victory prop bet.
Spann is a massive 205 pounder at 6’5” but Misha isn’t tiny either as he only giving up 2 inches of height and 2 inches of reach.
LHW finishers meet tomorrow!
— UFC Canada (@UFC_CA) March 12, 2021
If this fight doesn’t end before the final bell of the third round, I have to give the edge to Misha because of his technical superiority. With that being said, he does have a bit of a suspect chin and we will be operating inside of the small Octagon which means these two giants will be forced to engage for the entire fight.
I like Cirkunov here. He is the better fighter technically but if he wasn’t (-200) or so, I would stay away. He isn’t, though. Misha is fairly inexpensive at (-125). If you’re giving me the better technical fighter who also has better cardio for nearly even money, I’ll take it and see what happens.
This isn’t more than a 1 unit play, though. Spann is very dangerous and could have his breakout performance any fight now.
Jonathan Martinez + Nasrat Haqparast + Angela Hill: +112
I like this parlay here. I wouldn’t have added the German with the difficult name but his original opponent was pulled from the card and he is fighting a short notice replacement who will be making his UFC debut.
This should be a finish from Nas but his opponent is from Mexico and we all know how tough those guys can be. If you want to take Nas by decision at (+165), I don’t think it’s a terrible bet.
Power you can't forget! 💥
— UFC (@ufc) March 11, 2021
Rafa Garcia is 11-0 and you don’t get there without at least being pretty good. A finish could very well happen as Haq has some really fast and filthy hands but you’re going to get some value betting against the narrative.
It’s just an idea if that is your style but let’s just make him one leg of our 3-fight parlay today along with one of the most improved fighters in the UFC, Jonathan Martinez, and Angela Hill who already has a win over her opponent this Saturday night, Ashley Yoder.
Martinez has another tough guy in front of him in Davey Grant but that’s about where the comparison stops. Grant has good submissions and power but not technically sound on the feet and he lacks the wrestling ability to get the fight to the mat where he is in the all important top position.
Wrestling is as important as ever and Davey lacks takedowns while Martinez is a wiz on the feet and surprisingly powerful with his kicks.
Martinez snatches the liver of the Brit or possibly the head with that big left kick or Davey toughs out a decision loss. Either way, I think we have our 2nd leg of the parlay.
Angela Hill, who I did pick against simply because of the out of control betting line, will be our third leg.
— Angela Hill (@AngieOverkill) March 12, 2021
Ashley Yoder is a good wrestler and will have a massive reach advantage over Angela so this isn’t a slam dunk.
The two women have fought before already, though, and it appears that Hill has been the one to show more improvement in her overall game. She has even used takedowns to get herself out of trouble in a few of her fights.
The level of competition she has been up against is incomparable to that of Yoder. Angela has been in there with Waterson, Gadelha, Namajunas, and Andrade. Ashley, conversely, has arguably zero wins over UFC-level opponents in her entire career!
The company hasn’t minded keeping her around as she is a very classically beautiful woman and the difference of opponents they have chosen for her compared to Hill illustrates what matchmaking can do for a fighter’s career.
Thank you🙏🏽🐒 https://t.co/8VKzF6Z5IR
— Ashley Yoder (@AshleyYoderMMA) November 16, 2020
What I can say about Ashley Yoder is that she rarely gets blown out by anyone. She is a tough girl who stays in the fight and many times, makes things closer than they should be whether she is the more talented fighter or not.
That is my worry here. She knows how to fight a close fight and Hill isn’t a big stopper. If you want to take a shot on Angela by decision at (-180), I guess that is just about as likely to hit as her moneyline of (-400).
Yoder isn’t the type to get finished and Hill isn’t a finisher. Sure, it could happen but on paper, no.
Take Hill here to round out our parlay and put us into the plus money.
Muhammad vs Edwards Under 4.5 Rounds: +170
Okay, I know what you’re thinking. This fight is likely to go to a decision and I’m with you there but (+170) denotes an implied probability of only 37% so we only need to give this fight a 45% chance of ending inside of 22:29 to make a strong play.
— UFC (@ufc) March 12, 2021
5 rounds is a long time, guys, and I know Belal isn’t a finisher but he is a very very aggressive fighter and when you get a guy like that against someone who is possibly the quickest to the punch in the entire UFC Welterweight Division, Rocky could catch him with something sick.
No offense to Leon’s recent history with COVID-19.
The long awaited return is here…
— UFC (@ufc) March 12, 2021
Edwards has been away from the Octagon for over a year and a half while Belal has been away less than a month. Muhammad, even though he had a dominant victory over Diego Lima just a few weeks ago, did take quite a bit of damage to his calf.
He is, of course, not bringing attention to it for obvious reasons but Leon is a long guy who likes to switch stances and he might do just that to set up what could be a fight ender. 5 rounds is a long time, guys, and Belal is aggressive.
— UFC (@ufc) March 12, 2021
He didn’t fight all these fights to finally work his way back up to top competition just to lose a decision. The guy is going to go for it and that could either lead to a decision or potentially stoppage win for him if Edwards gasses or Leon will catch him coming in with the technical and length advantage.
The line is off. Just look at the under 1.5 rounds at (+410). Yes, I understand the durability of each fighter matched with their similar high levels of skill but the lines are crazy. Belal has been finished before and we could see a much more powerful Leon Edwards in his return.
Not afraid to make a statement 😤
— UFC (@ufc) March 12, 2021
For me, though, it is the aggression of the underdog matched with the precision, length, and speed of the favorite that makes the under 4.5 a playable line.
It covers us on a few different paths to victory from both fighters.
Those are your best bets for this week’s UFC Fight Night event from Las Vegas. I really wanted to keep hammering this week as Cam Hanes would say but I couldn’t help but foresee some potential thumb smashes in our future.
It only takes one look at this fight card with or without the betting odds alongside the names of the fighters, and you can see clearly that this card is a tough one.
Look at Matthew Semelsberger vs Jason Witt. Really? How about JJ Aldrich and Courtney Casey? We have to decide on a winner or even a round total? I realize it’s my job to find value where others cannot but it is also just as important to know when to pass.
Remember that pro poker players only actually play 25% of their hands and most professional bettors are only going to play 3 or 4 fights out of 12 if that much. Last week was a bit of an exception but we can’t force anything. There is either value there or it isn’t and I really tried with a lot of the matchups this week but came up short. When you look at a matchup and WANT to find value and make a prediction but after tape, interviews, and stats, you are even more uncertain-it’s time to move on to the next one. Guys, there is a UFC event every week now and if you count all the Bellators, there is at least one high level pro MMA fight card for every single week of the year. More opportunities will come and we have to practice all the personality traits that the casinos and sportsbooks want us to ignore. Our plays this week are still good, though, at least right now, haha.
Top to bottom, I don’t mind a stab on Belal Muhammad at (+210) but I almost like the under 4.5 for (+185) even better. Misha Cirkunov is priced well where he is at (-125). Spann is very dangerous, though, and as I mentioned a moment ago, his ceiling is higher than Misha’s and Cirkunov could also be on his way down from said heights.
I really really liked Dan Ige at (-120) earlier this week but money has come in as others agreed and now he is up at (-150). I don’t think that is too expensive either but Dan is going to have to keep Gavin on the back foot and defend the takedown.
If he is successful there, I love his chances to win a 3 round fight. Tucker has the muscles and the tattoos but I don’t think he has the dog in him to back it up.
— UFC Canada (@UFC_CA) March 11, 2021
I’m sorry Gavin but it’s my job to call it as I see it and there are fighters in the UFC that for lack of a better word, flake.
Believe me, I get it. This isn’t for everyone and it isn’t like the most skilled martial artists all make it to the UFC level. Unless you are that much better than everyone, you have to have the heart of a lion or you’re in the wrong sport.
Dan Ige is an in your face kind of fighter and I think that could make the difference in a close matchup against a frontrunner like Gavin Tucker. Bet smart, though, as sometimes frontrunners get out front and stay there.
I like Jonathan Martinez to handle Dangerous Davey Grant. The latter has momentum here but I think the power left kick of the Texan could prove to be the concrete wall to Grant’s Honda Civic.
We also took Manel Kape to get the W over Brazil’s Matheus Nicolau. Kape was highly touted coming out of Japan in his first UFC fight just weeks ago against future Flyweight gatekeeper Alexandre Pantoja.
We luckily didn’t buy all of the hype as I’m a big believer in Pantoja and the UFC vet pulled it out. Manel was just debuting inside of the Octagon in that fight, though. The more research I do on all of the UFC fighters, the more I am noticing they lost or had a hard time with their first ever fight for the company. Manel could have won, though, but he just didn’t throw enough. Sure, if he didn’t pick his spots as carefully, then he could have also been hit more but you have to try. Betting on a guy or girl who has the timing, speed, distance, and even technical edge but they just don’t throw enough-boy that can be very frustrating.
Like possible break stuff frustrating. I will chalk Kape’s less than optimal performance up to first time Octagon jitters and he is getting a step down in this fight albeit a small one but that should be all it takes.
Kape’s moneyline is decent but I also like the anti-narrative Kape by decision method of victory prop of (+300). You’re giving me the favorite to win a decision in the Flyweight Division at 3 to 1?
I know a lot of people on Darren Stewart this week to be a little bit better than Eryk Anders but the latter and underdog is someone who doesn’t mind stalling against the cage for 15 minutes. He could care less if he gets into a fight or not. He knows his skills don’t match up with most of the fighters in the UFC so he has to win any way he can.
This is business.
A sprinkle on Stewart at (-180) isn’t the worst play ever if you want to add that onto your sheet for Saturday night. Hill by decision for roughly the same betting odds is an even better play, in my opinion.
Next week, we will do a piece on some of the potentially more profitable live betting spots. A classic example is a fighter who is the favorite and comes out 100% in the first round but inevitably slows as the fight progresses.
If his opponent is a slow starter who picks it up as the fight goes on, then you can see where the value would be after your guy or gal loses the first round. You could be (+150) to start the fight, lose the first round, and the live line before the 2nd starts shoots up to (+250)!
Maybe the favorite squeaks out the 2nd before dropping the third and you lose but it’s (+250). You’re supposed to lose more than you win.
Take 1 out of 3 and you just made a 17+% return on your investment. That is a nice number. I am shooting for 20% in 2021 but would be very happy with 17%. We only need about 7% which seems to be the magic number for most businesses to make a profit so anything in the double digits is good.
Good sucks, though. As Israel Adesanya said “Dare to be great!”