The UFC Octagon makes their yearly November return to Madison Square Gardens this Saturday with another stacked pay-per-view card – UFC 268. We’ve got two title fights at the top of the lineup – both rematches – plus some other big-name talent spread throughout the card. Let’s win some money, shall we? Here are my UFC 268 predictions.
UFC 268 Predictions
All odds courtesy of PointsBet
Kamaru Usman (-300) vs Colby Covington
Kamaru Usman TKOed Colby Covington when the two first fought back in 2019. Covington has only fought once since that time while the champ had three more successful title defenses. Usman basically is just a supercharged version of Covington – better than him in every aspect of the game. And he has shown with each title defense that he is improving. The champ retains.
Rose Namajunas (-110) vs Zhang Weili
I’m going with the champ prevailing in the co-main event, as well – this one for the UFC Women’s Strawweight Championship. ‘Thug Rose’ became a two-time champion by shockingly knocking out Weili Zhang at UFC 261 in April, and Zhang hasn’t taken the loss too well. I’m not liking her headspace, and I like how well-coached Rose is. She’ll have the game plan to beat back Zhang once again. But it’s a coin flip of a fight.
Justin Gaethje (-210) vs Michael Chandler
This could be your Fight of the Night, pitting former WSOF champ Justin Gaethje against former Bellator champ Michael Chandler. Both men were champion wrestlers in college and both have concussive strikes. I think Gaethje has more power, and definitely has the better chin of the two, so if it devolves into a slugfest (which it probably will), he’s the pick.
Shane Burgos (-210) vs Billy Quarantillo
It’s tough picking a guy coming off being on the wrong end of a scary knockout like Shane Burgos is, but I like him to right his ship after a two-fight skid this Saturday at Billy Quarantillo’s expense. Look for him to use his length advantage and penchant for being the more active striker to get the W.
Marlon Vera (-180) vs Frankie Edgar
Speaking of scary KOs, 40-year-old Frankie Edgar was knocked out via flying knee earlier this year. This pick is as much of a fade on Edgar as it is an endorsement for Marlon ‘Chito’ Vera. But Vera is 11 years younger and slightly bigger and more active in the striking department, as well as being a strong grappler.
Alex Pereira (-270) vs Andreas Michailidis
Champion kickboxer Alex Pereira famously beat UFC champ Israel Adesanya twice in that sport, as well as beating fellow UFC 268 participant Dustin Jacoby. Now a pro mixed martial artist making his UFC debut, his striking and pressure should be too much for Andreas Michailidis on Saturday.
Bobby Green (-193) vs Al Iaquinta
Realtor Al Iaquinta makes his UFC return after two years on the sidelines, and I don’t think he’ll like the results. ‘King’ Bobby Green has the wrestling to thwart Iaquinta’s strongest attribute, and he’s the better striker of the two.
Phil Hawes (-350) vs Chris Curtis
We made the mistake on the MMA Gambling Podcast to doubt Phil Hawes in the past, but those days are over. He’ll be way too big and physical for Chris Curtis in this short notice debut up a weight class.
Nassourdine Imavov (-125) vs Edmen Shahbazyan
Man the UFC just keeps sticking 23-year-old top prospect Edmen Shahbazyan in tough matchups, despite losing his last two. Make that three-straight L’s, as Nassourdine Imavov will pick him apart on the feet come Saturday night.
Ian Garry (-375) vs Jordan Williams
Speaking of top prospects, Ireland’s best (perhaps) makes his UFC debut on Saturday. Former Cage Warriors champ Ian Garry has no real holes anywhere, which the same can’t be said for Jordan Williams, who lost both his UFC fights thus far.
Chris Barnett (-106) vs Gian Villante
A chunky guy battle! The difference being Gian Villante, a long-time light heavyweight, just seems to have let himself go, while Chris Barnett is just a big, chunky, athletic guy. ‘Huggy Bear’ gets his first UFC win on Saturday.
Dustin Jacoby (-375) vs John Allan
The aforementioned Dustin Jacoby takes this fight on very short notice (less than a week). Despite the odds being against last-minute replacements, he’s just too good of a striker to lose to John Allan.
Melsik Baghdasaryan (-325) vs Bruno Souza
Now we’ll rely on the stats and go against short notice debuting fighter Bruno Souza. Melsik Baghdasaryan is a very high-level striker, which he’ll ride to victory.
Carlos ‘CJ’ Vergara (+145) vs Ode’ Osbourne
Let’s get some plus money on this very chalky card. Newcomer CJ Vergara impressed on this season of Dana White’s Contender Series, while Ode’ Osbourne has not impressed much over his three UFC fights (1-2).
Overall Record: 559-429
Return on Investment: -(5.4)%
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