Long before sports betting was legal, or I was even of gambling age, my friends and I had a tradition of meeting up on the weekends to watch the UFC fights. My buddy Sean would rent the card while myself and a few others would supply wings and snacks – not bad for high school seniors on a Saturday night. Now that we’re older we meet at a local bar but our passion for watching cage fighting is still the same. The gentleman’s bets we used to make have since turned into cash bets on New Jersey applicable sports books.
When it comes to UFC 241 there are three fights I’m looking forward to tonight: Yoel Romero vs. Paulo Costa, Anthony Pettis vs. Nate Diaz and Daniel Cormier vs. Stipe Miocic 2.
With these three fights here are three bets I like, there odds according to SugarHouse Casino and why.
Yoel Romero vs. Paulo Costa
Yoel Romero (13-3) most recently fought against Robert Whittaker and lost via split decision on June 9, 2018. Paulo Costa (12-0) most recently fought against Uriah Hall on July 7, 2018 and won via TKO. Romero and Costa have been scheduled to fight before but was canceled due to multiple complications.
The bet to make: Yoel Romero by KO, TKO or DQ +125
Why? I’m a Yoel Romero guy. Dude’s a great wrestler with incredible power. He has eight knock out wins in the UFC compared to two decision wins. I know Costa is undefeated but he hasn’t quite faced someone with Romero’s power before. That said, I lean to the veteran who only lost twice in the UFC, both times to the incumbent UFC Middleweight champion.
Anthony Pettis vs. Nate Diaz
Anthony “Showtime” Pettis last fought against Stephen Thompson on March 23, 2019 where he won via knockout. Nate Diaz last fought against Conor McGregor on August 20, 2016 where he lost via majority decision. While the two are longtime fighters at lightweight, their paths haven’t crossed. Tonight they meet in the Welterweight division.
The bet to make: Nate Diaz by finish +333 (KO, TKO, DQ, Submission, etc.)
Why? Nate Diaz is a beast, that’s why. But seriously – dude has incredible cardio, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and boxing skills to match. Sure, he hasn’t fought in close to three years but he’s a veteran of the game, he should be more than OK.
If the concept of ring rust scare you I don’t hate the line for Pettis to win by finish either (+333). The two fighters are finishing machines, 15 finishes between the two of them. I don’t foresee this fight going the distance. I give Diaz the slightest of nods but I wouldn’t be shocked if Pettis has his hand raised either.
Daniel Cormier vs. Stipe Miocic 2
Daniel Cormier last fought against Derrick Lewis on November 3, 2018 where he won via submission. Stipe Miocic last fought against Cormier on July 7, 2018 where he lost the heavyweight title via knockout. This is the rematch I’ve been waiting for.
The bet to make: Stipe Miocic by finish +165 (KO, TKO, DQ, Submission, etc.)
Why? Because the status of the UFC Heavyweight division relies on it. Sure, “DC” has only lost to Jon Jones over his illustrious career, but Stipe is one of the best heavyweights to ever fight. He has incredible power and is looking to improve his speed for his rematch against Cormier.
Picking Stipe over DC is not a slight to DC at all. I used to hate watching him fight but I’ve come to really like DC and his game. He’s one if, if not the, best to ever do it. He’s great for the sport and I love watching his mix of power, endurance and wrestling.
My feeling is that Stipe Miocic learns from his mistakes and finds a way to hand DC his second career loss (one loss and a no contest to Jones) thus setting up a possible trilogy fight between the two.
These three fights are the “must-watches” of the card. The storylines are there – between the Stipe/DC rematch, Diaz’s return to the octagon and Romero’s seemingly endless career there’s something behind all three fights. Grab a drink, your favorite snack, and enjoy a night of fun violence.
You can follow Anthony Mazziotti on Twitter (@AntMazziotti) and e-mail him at Anthonymazziott[email protected].
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