This is the week we turn it all around with our UFC picks. No more 3-7 weeks like last week. No, the UFC 258 Betting Guide is going to be nothing but winners, winners and more winners.
So let’s get to it. As per usual in the COVID era, Saturday’s fight card is a fluid thing right up to the second the cage door closes, so you can check out the updated lineup and up-to-the-minute betting odds right here.
UFC 258 Betting Guide
Kamaru Usman (-270) vs Gilbert Burns
UFC 258 is headlined by this UFC Welterweight Championship fight, pitting two former teammates against each other. The champ was won 16-straight; Burns has won six-straight. Usman will be the much bigger man in the cage, and has the striking and grappling stats in his favour. I don’t see Usman losing this fight, as he’s just too good and big and strong, but Burns’s unreal jiu-jitsu will give him pause when considering using his strongest trait – wrestling. Usman is my pick, but I’m not a fan of a number this high for this fight.
Maycee Barber (-105) vs Alexa Grasso
Interesting choice for a co-main event – two young female fighters, with Barber coming off of a loss and a year on the sidelines due to a knee injury. She’s a slight underdog in this one, but I’m riding with her. Assuming the time on the shelf hasn’t harmed her too much, I think her strength and athleticism will allow her to beat the inconsistent Grasso, who has never won back-to-back UFC fights (and she won her last fight, so…).
Kelvin Gastelum (-220) vs Ian Heinisch
Gastelum has been on a skid since challenging for the UFC middleweight title, but I think he will turn it around this week. Gastelum has fought nothing but the top of the division the past few years, and Heinisch hasn’t proven himself to be at that level yet.
Maki Pitolo (+140) vs Julian Marquez
‘Coconut Bombz’ vs ‘The Cuban Missile Crisis’ in a battle of two of the best nicknames in the sport. I’m taking another live dog in this one in Mr. Bombz. Marquez has been out of action since July of 2018, and Pitolo is the superior striker with three inches of reach at his advantage.
Jim Miller (+210) vs Bobby Green
I’m going dog-heavy in the main card portion of my UFC 258 betting guide, with none a bigger dog than grizzled veteran Jim Miller. The rationale here is that Miller is an extremely good wrestler and grappler, and Green concedes takedowns in all of his fights. So I’m seeing a clear path to victory here for Miller at a very nice +210.
Rodolfo Vieira (-390) vs Anthony Hernandez
While there might not be much value taking BJJ wizard Vieira, who has multiple gold medals in international grappling competitions, at -390 to win this fight, look to get in on a prop bet of him winning via submission. Six of his seven pro wins have ended via this fashion.
Belal Muhammad (-430) vs Dhiego Lima
Belal ‘Remember the Name’ Muhammad has quietly won seven of his last eight fights. Not so quietly that the bookies didn’t notice, however. So while he is my pick to win this fight, I’m not touching a -430 line.
Mallory Martin (-150) vs Polyana Viana
M&M won her last fight, is two years younger than Viana, and has the striking stats in her favor. She’s a very strong wrestler which should negate Viana’s BJJ brown belt (read more about Martin right here).
Chris Gutierrez (-140) vs Andre Ewell
This is a hastily-scheduled catchweight fight at 140-pounds, as Ewell had to pull out of a recent fight due to catching COVID. Gutierrez is the younger fighter, and has superior striking and grappling stats, so I’m going chalk here.
Ricky Simon (-250) vs Brian Kelleher
Simon just picked up a win a couple of weeks ago at 135 pounds – now he’ll step into this 145-pound fight on short notice. I still like him getting the job done, as he’s younger, bigger and the better striker and grappler. Should be a good scrap.
Gabriel Green (-135) vs Philip Rowe
Rowe will be making his UFC debut, after having been out of the cage since the summer of 2019. While he’ll be the much bigger man, I’m going with Green due to his superior resume.
Miranda Maverick (-140) vs Gillian Robertson
This is quite the curtain jerker – should be a terrific fight. While I hate betting against a fellow Canadian, I think Maverick is too big and strong, and a better striker than Robertson.
UFC Predictions Overall Results
Overall Record: 256-189
Return on Investment: -(32.0)%
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