The Ultimate Fighting Championship returns to Canada this weekend with UFC 240. The card, which will take place in Edmonton, is relatively thin in terms of star power, but bettors should still be able to find some value on some of the betting menus — or if value isn’t your top concern, some skin in the game.
Here, NJ Online Gambling takes a look at the top three bouts on the top-heavy card, with a comparison of prices at FanDuel Sportsbook, PointsBet, William Hill, DraftKings Sportsbook, and BetStars. As we always say, the best idea is to shop around.
Max Holloway (C) v. Frankie Edgar
Holloway (20-4) is coming off of a loss, which snapped his legendary 13-fight win streak in the UFC. He moved up a division his last bout, so he returns to his more natural weight class of 145 in this matchup with MMA all-time great Edgar (23-6-1). The 37-year-old Edgar, who hails from New Jersey, is nearing the end of his storied career, and this is presumed to be his last opportunity to fight for UFC gold. He’ll be a considerable underdog against the Hawaiian, thanks to a modest 3-2 record over his last five fights.
New Jersey sportsbooks are pretty much in agreement with Holloway at -400, which translates to an implied win probability of 80%. There’s more price disparity on Edgar, with the best line currently sitting at +320 at multiple books. At that price, Edgar has an implied probability of 23.8%.
Though a fan favorite, the betting public sees Edgar, who is undersized against his 27-year-old opponent, as having an uphill battle in the bout. There’s probably more value on Edgar than there is on Holloway, as Edgar has been scheduled to face Holloway before and he’s had a whopping 15 months off to prepare for Saturday’s bout. Edgar’s been preparing for Holloway for years. Also, Edgar might win more than 25% of the time against any featherweight in the UFC, which would give his +320 some modest value.
- FanDuel: Holloway -390, Edgar +290
- PointsBet: Holloway -400, Edgar +290
- DraftKings: Holloway -400, Edgar +310
- BetStars: Holloway -400, Edgar +320
- William Hill: Holloway -400, Edgar +320
As for method of victory, it’s worth noting that Holloway has never been knocked out in his pro MMA career, and this is unlikely to be the first time. If you think Edgar is durable enough to survive Holloway’s onslaught and make the fight competitive, there could be some value in betting on the fight going the distance. At FanDuel, the price is +144 on a decision, at DraftKings it’s +150, while BetStars is offering +163. Those are the only three books offering that bet.
Cris Cyborg v. Felicia Spencer
Cyborg (20-2) is coming off a devastating loss to Amanda Nunes in late December. At 34, the question is how much gas does the Brazilian MMA legend have in the tank after some brutal weight cutting over the years. The 28-year-old Spencer (7-0) is taking a major step up in competition with the Cyborg bout, and the question is whether she’s ready for the next level.
Spencer is a BJJ specialist, so her ideal scenario is to take Cyborg’s back and get the submission. Spencer’s last three wins came via rear-naked choke. Cyborg hasn’t been submitted since 2005.
The books have Spencer at around +450, with the best price out there being +500. As for Cyborg, the lines are a little wider in a book-by-book comparison. The best price on Cyborg is -600, which gives her an implied win probability of about 85%. Had Cyborg won against Nunes last December, the line here would probably be in the ballpark of -1500, so there might be some value betting against the public sentiment that Cyborg is now, thanks to a first-round KO against a heavy hitter, very beatable.
- FanDuel: Cyborg -600, Spencer +410
- PointsBet: Cyborg -715, Spencer +466
- DraftKings: Cyborg -670, Spencer +450
- BetStars: Cyborg -650, Spencer +450
- William Hill: Cyborg -700, Spencer +500
There are no other betting options on this fight between the five NJ books.
Geoff Neal v. Niko Price
This welterweight fight is expected to be a barn burner, despite the odds being wide between the two competitors. The sentiment among the MMA community appears to be that someone is going to be knocked out. With a matchup between two skilled strikers, the lines should be narrower, which probably gives this fight the most value among the top three bouts on the card.
The 28-year-old Neal (11-2) is riding a five-fight winning streak, with four of those wins by finish. Price (13-2) is 3-2 in his last five, but his last bout was a win by first-round KO against UFC vet Tim Means, who hadn’t suffered a TKO/KO since 2004. Price, who is also under 30 years of age, has a legitimate shot to win, so with the lines being around +250, he probably has some value. The best price out there is +270, which translates to a 27% implied probability. The fight is probably closer to 60-40.
- FanDuel: Neal -300, Price +230
- PointsBet: Neal -334, Price +250
- DraftKings: Neal -335, Price +250
- BetStars: Neal -333, Price +270
- William Hill: Neal -325, Price +265
The books aren’t offering any additional action on this bout.
Photo by Adam Hagy / USA Today Sports
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