Last week MMA betting fans finally got to see a UFC card following nearly a month and a half break in the action. The biggest fight promotion is right back at it this weekend with an epic pay-per-view event that will be headlined by a UFC Light Heavyweight title fight between former teammates Jon Jones and Rashad Evans.
Also on display on the UFC 145 fight card will be a contender fight at Bantamweight between Miguel Torres and Michael McDonald and the return of one of the most highly-touted prospects in the Welterweight division when Rory MacDonald steps into the Octagon against Che Mills.
How can Evans beat an unbeatable champion?
No fighter in the sport of MMA is unbeatable, but Jones certainly looks like he’s above and beyond any fighter at 205 pounds. The dominant champion has soundly beaten three straight former champions and will be looking to finish off a fourth when he faces his former sparring partner at UFC 145.
Sportsbooks are handicapping the champion as the heavy favorite and oddsmakers at Bovada currently have him as a huge -500 favorite. MMA betting fans seem to agree with this and have grown that price from the initial -400 line. Evans initially came with a +300 payout and that number has risen to +350 over the last couple of weeks.
Watching Jones dismantle the Light Heavyweight division over the last year and a half makes it easy to agree that he should be the heavy favorite against anyone in the division, but when you factor in how well Evans knows his fighting style and the emotional aspect resulting from their history together, one has to think that there’s some betting value in the Evans upset line.
Is McDonald ready for the step up in competition?
Former WEC champion Torres is considered to be one of the best in the history of the Bantamweight division. He has fought many epic fights in his career against the best 135-pounders in the world. Torres will have a tough test on Saturday night when he steps into the Octagon against rising star McDonald.
McDonald looks like he will be a big part of the future of the Bantamweight division and will be looking to make a statement with a win over Torres. He has never faced a fighter the calibre of Torres, but his fighting skills look ready for the big stage – providing his head can handle the pressure of the main card of a UFC pay-per-view event.
Oddsmakers currently have the fight closely handicapped with a slight edge going to the more experienced Torres. He currently comes at a -120 price while the McDonald upset costs -110. As the lines indicate, this one is a pick’em and could go either way.
Is Rory MacDonald fully healed from his injury?
MacDonald has been one of the most dominant Welterweights in MMA over the last six years, suffering only one loss in the final seconds of a fight that he was winning on all scorecards. He has dominated all his opponents and should be challenging for a title, but an injury halted an opportunity to fight Brian Ebersole late last year and halted his title pursuit temporarily.
Now MacDonald will make his return against U.K. fighter Mills. Mills may be on a five-fight win streak but that only includes one UFC victory. MacDonald should be fighting Top 10 opponents and looks like a bargain at Bovada at -500. The only issue that could come into play is whether or not MacDonald is back to his former form. If he is, this fight should be walk in the park. If he isn’t, Mills could pay off as a generous +350 underdog.
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