May 3, 2022
UFC 274 will take place on Saturday, March 7, and there are two titles at stake. Charles Oliveira defends the Lightweight Championship against Justin Gaethje while Rose Namajunas defends her Strawweight belt from Carla Esparza. We will give you our best tips and picks for these fights as well as the pick for Tony Ferguson vs. Michael Chandler so that you are ready to place your wagers at the top sports betting sites.
Oliveira has a streak of 10 wins dating back to 2018. He submitted Dustin Poirier just one minute into the third round of his latest bout. Why is he a -180 favorite to win against Justin Gaethje then?
My guess is that it’s because of Gaethje’s stopping power. Gaethje has won four of his last five fights by either TKO or KO on punches. The best bookmakers are respectful of the 33-year-old’s striking abilities.
The 32-year-old Brazilian is a top submission artist and holds the record for the most submissions in UFC history with 15 of his 20 fights ending with his opponent tapping.
This leaves me wondering if the will end with Oliveira on his back or Gaethje tapping out. Oliveira should be able to stand on his own feet and Gaethje might punch himself out of energy early. At +135, I like the Brazilian’s odds of winning by submission to make 11 consecutive W’s.
In the final days of 2014 Carla Esparza submitted Rose Namajunas in the 3rd round of the UFC Strawweight title fight. So what can we learn from a fight that took place over seven years ago, or should we just ignore it completely?
Namajunas’ ground game has improved, especially over the past couple yeats and she is now one of the top female fighters in UFC. Esparza, now 34 years old, is riding a five-fight winning streak even though she has slowed and lost a step with time.
Esparza isn’t a skilled striker, but she’s still a great grappler and can chew up fighters while grinding out wins by decision, something she has done in four of her five most recent wins.
Namajunas is aware of this and, while she likes to swing and stand, she should still be able enough to do enough on the floor to win this fight. I like Namajunas to win by decision at +170.
Tony Ferguson has been in the UFC over ten years, a lifetime compared to most fighters. He had a 12 win streak that stretched from 2013 to 2019, but now he’s lost three consecutive fights. Michael Chandler introduced himself to the UFC when he knocked out Dan Hooker in the first round of their fight in early 2019. He then lost to the two fighters who will now compete for the lightweight title.
Ferguson, at 38-years-old is a long shot at the top UFC betting sites and currently listed at +320 on the moneyline.
Chandler, 36, is not a spring chicken. However, he still has explosiveness and as an All American wrestler will be comfortable if the fight goes to ground. Although I think Chandler will win this fight comfortably, at -430 there isn’t much money to be won betting on the moneyline.
Instead, you can expect Chandler to win by decision at +260. Only one of Ferguson’s four UFC defeats came in regulation. That one was stopped by the referee three minutes into round five. Ferguson should be able to hold his nerve for three rounds, even though this may be his last fight in the UFC.