UFC 276 is nearly upon us! Here are the bets @LiamPicksFights is eyeing when it comes to the main bout of Israel Adesanya vs. Jared Cannonier, as well as the prelims and early prelims.
Find the bets he’s locking in below.
UFC 276 Odds, Picks & Predictions
Jessica-Rose Clark vs. Julija Stoliarenko Pick: Stoliarenko Wins By Submission | +500 at FanDuel
Women Bantamweight | Early Prelims | 6:10 p.m. ET
Our first play on the board will be pulled from the very first fight of the night. From a mathematical perspective, this play makes perfect sense.
Julija Stoliarenko is a talented grappler who has been unable to bring her skills to bear against some of the higher-skilled opponents she has faced in the UFC. Jessica-Rose Clark is 4-3 in the UFC but she has faced a very low level of opposition in her own right.
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I believe this fight should be lined closer to pick’em, as Stoliarenko is a more aggressive striker, a more lethal submission grappler and a larger woman. Stoliarenko has secured nine professional wins and eight were via Rd. 1 submission (all armbars).
If you want to get more specific, you can take a Rd. 1 SUB prop at +1200. However, I think that if Clark chooses to force the fight into wrestling and the clinch like she did in her last fight, Stoliarenko will be live to find a submission at any point in the 15 minutes.
+500 is equivalent to 16.7% and it is far and away her most likely win condition.
With her moneyline priced at a market average of +128 (43.9%) this prop is clearly mispriced. The no-vig odds on Stoliarenko equals +148 (40.3%) and no domestic market is offering her moneyline greater than +140 (at Pointsbet).
Therefore, this SUB bet from FanDuel represents the best way to bet Stoliarenko on the market.
Brad Tavares vs. Dricus Du Plessis Pick: Fight Does Not Go To Decision | -124 at FanDuel
Middleweight | Preliminary Card | 6:35 p.m. ET
I played Dricus Du Plessis at +108 before the line flipped, but now whatever value there may have been on his moneyline has been rapidly extracted.
Du Plessis opened as a +110 (47.6%) underdog and he currently sits at a market average price of -157 (61.1%), meaning the line has moved more than 13% in his favor since opening.
If you missed out on early prices on Du Plessis (OddsJam identified him as a +EV bet two weeks ago based on Pinnacle discrepancy) I think targeting fight doesn’t go to decision on the prop market is a much better bet at this point.
Du Plessis has never seen the judges’ scorecards in an 18-fight professional career. Traditionally speaking, the opposite is true for Brad Tavares, as he has seen the judges’ scorecards in 60% of his career fights (15 of 25).
If we combine the records of Du Plessis and Tavares, we see that only 34.9% of their combined career fights (15 of 43) have gone to decision. Du Plessis has been finished in both of his career losses (once via SUB, once via KO), while Tavares has been finished via strikes in three of his five UFC losses (three of six professional losses).
Instead of laying 60% on Du Plessis to win, why not give yourself more outs and include the possibility that Tavares scores his third knockout win in the UFC or suffers his fourth loss inside the distance.
As a division, middleweight fights end inside the distance at one of the highest rates in the UFC (59% over a 700+ fight sample size) so the fact that we can get a discounted price with a proven finisher like Du Plessis is a no-brainer for me personally.
Israel Adesanya vs. Jared Cannonier Pick: Fight Does Not Go To Decision | -115 at Caesars
Middleweight | Main Event | Approx. 11:45 p.m. ET
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I am going to reiterate a fact about the UFC’s middleweight division: the finish rate is nearly 60% over a 700-fight sample size.
I wanted to be sure the trend was still applicable to five-round fights, and I was able to determine that the 59% divisional finish rate is consistent when controlling for five-round middleweight bouts as well as three-round bouts.
At a -115 indication, we are being told that this fight will finish ~53.5% of the time, which is more than 5% discount on the divisional finish rate. Moreover, the stylistic dynamic in this matchup makes the play even more desirable.
Adesanya continues to claim that he doesn’t want to be viewed as boring and that he will be pursuing a finish. His counterpart Jared Cannonier will likely never get another crack at the title at 38 years of age, so he will likely sell out and risk life and limb to become a champion.
History tells us that fighters 38 years of age and older are much more likely than their younger counterparts to be knocked out in a cage fight. However, Cannonier has a ~1% career knockdown rate with a 4:2 knockdown for and against ratio since dropping to the middleweight division.
Speaking of finish rates, Israel Adesanya has a 68% finish rate (36.4% strictly UFC competition) and Jared Cannonier has an 80% finishing rate on his career and a 75% finish win rate in the UFC.
However, the downside for Cannonier is that he has been finished in 40% of his career losses and he is the older, smaller fighter in this matchup, so there are strong reasons to believe either fighter can finish the other in this matchup with an Adesanya finish being more likely based on markets and logic.
However, why get cute laying on a fighter in a primary stand-up kickboxing match with big power on both sides when the fight not to go the distance is available at nearly even money?
I can understand people wanting to take a shot on the underdog or a specific prop market on the champion, but it’s hard for me to comprehend laying 85% or more in a world title fight between two stand-up fighters.
If you are forced to play unders, you can still find solid prices on the under 4.5 rounds for this fight at -105 at Caesars and -106 at Unibet and BetRivers.