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UFC 225 Betting Preview

Dana White sure has a summer of fun planned for fight fans. UFC 225: Whittaker vs. Romero will come to you live from Chicago, Illinois on Saturday, June 9th and is a stacked card full of well known fighters lining up against up and coming talents. Of course, the headliner is a titanic rematch between two of the best, pound for pounders in the game.

Check out the odds at and get your bets in on the moneylines and round totals! The fight lines come off the board starting at 10pm ET for the main card. Be an early bird and lock in that worm for UFC 225 betting.

UFC Middleweight Championship
Yoel Romero +195 over Robert Whittaker -230
The rematch that everyone has been waiting for is finally here. I really like Robert Whittaker, but the middleweight title doesn’t stay around the waist of its holder for long these days. Anderson Silva defended it a record ten times, while Weidman was able to fend off three challengers before ceding it to Rockhold, who immeadiately lost the strap to Bisping. Bisping defeated Henderson but was then defeated by GSP, who isn’t medically cleared (or is and just isn’t fighting any time soon…I’ll care when the fight is booked).

The point is that this division has quickly become the deepest and most bloodthirsty grouping in the entire UFC, and Whittaker is getting deserving odds as a champion. Beating Romero soundly for the interim title in the first place goes a long way in explaining the gap between these two in the fight book.

From a betting standpoint, the odds on Romero are simply too good to pass up. Whittaker is a far more disciplined and proven fighter, but when Romero is on there are many that think he’s the best middleweight in the world (that doesn’t have the initials “GSP”).

Romero has already been dinged for missing weight against Rockhold, whom he gleefully annihilated, and was a shell of himself against Whittaker in their initial bout at UFC 213. Reinvented and refocused, there’s no way I can pass up a near-two-to-one opportunity on his exciting brand of punishment.

As stated, Whittaker is incredible and a hard bet on him to retain isn’t out of the question. I just don’t think the gap between these two is as cavernous as the oddsmakers are indicating.

Rafael dos Anjos +100 over Colby Covington -120
Nobody really likes Covington, which makes his 13-1 SU record that features wins over Dong Hyu Kim and Demian Maia all the more frustrating. He’s a rabid trash talker, and essentially on a hot streak. At 30 years old, he’s also at his physical peak.

Squaring him up against a virtual icon in the sport is the perfect set up. Either Covington wins and the whole MMA world goes nuts about it, or dos Anjos emerges victorious and cements his place as the welterweight division’s top contender.

Since moving up a division, dos Anjos has been reborn. He is on a three-win tear that have seemingly invigorated a career that was sent in to a tailspin thanks to a lucky punch from Eddie Alvarez nearly two years ago. This has Fight of the Night potential all over it, as neither dos Anjos nor Covington are apt to finishing bouts early at this stage in their careers.

The longer this fight goes, the better it sets up for dos Anjos. I love the odds on this fight, and I do understand that dos Anjos has a little public factor here, but it’s a lot closer than the book is suggesting. Covington is a great fighter, but this is the biggest test of his career and dos Anjos is as good as advertised. Probably eve better.

Holly Holm -210 over Megan Anderson +180
We all know Holly Holm. The former featherweight champion has moved to bantamweight, and the results have been solid. She destroyed Bethe Correia with an unexpected head kick, and then went the distance with Cyborg at UFC 219 and paid the price for it physically. She’s an outright warrior, but she’s also 1-4 SU in her last five outings.

Anderson is a newcomer to the promotion and will make her debut at UFC 225. At 8-2 SU, with a four fight win streak in hand since maturing in to the fighter we know now. How good is she? Anderson was supposed to make her debut at UFC 214…against Cyborg.

This being said, Anderson is too raw to really bank on even though Holm’s recent record isn’t that inviting. She is more or less being lumped in to this fight in order to immediately assess her viability as a division threat, and there aren’t many who truly believe she’s on that level just yet. Holm is a tough investment to make money on, but her experience should be the deciding factor.

The only wrinkle available for Anderson is if she’s patient and allows Holm to lead the fight, but I think nerves and an eagerness to make an impression will steer Anderson in to attacking Holm and putting her under pressure, which is exactly where the favorite likes to be.

Andrei Arlovski +210 over Tai Tuivasa -250
The 39-year old Arlovski is like a damn cockroach. After incurring five straight, seemingly career killing losses, Arlovski rebounded with two unanimous decision victories over Junior Albini and then whooped Stefan Struve to reassert himself in the picture.

You probably have no idea who Tuivasa is, and that’s fine. In a nutshell, he’s a huge, heavy handed, striker that has a genuine boxing pedigree. He’s also just 25 years old. I normally don’t bet against Somoans when it comes to any type of fight, but Tuivasa isn’t nearly as dominant as he could be. Granted, he’s undefeated in 7 fights through his MMA career, but Arlovski represents and experienced, “seen it all” type of veteran that has likely found holes in his game.

Tuivasa’s power looks bone crunching, but it’s not world ending. Not yet anyways. This is his biggest test yet, and a high-profile fight could very well sky rocket this young man’s career. I just have trouble seeing him sneaking past the sneaky Arlovski, who will likely unleash a defensive bag of tricks that will push Tuivasa deep in to a fight, which would be unchartered territory. Tuivasa has ended all of his fights. Come to think of it, I don’t know why I’m betting against him. Oh well! That’s why they call it “gambling”!

CM Punk +170 over Mike Jackson -200
I know, I know! What can I say? I’m a sucker for this kind of stuff. This isn’t a mortgage busting bet on my behalf, and the complete truth is that you should definitely bet on Mike Jackson. I just think CM Punk’s humiliation at the hands of Mickey Gall 21 months ago sent him back to the drawing board.

One of the biggest overall mistakes we make with MMA betting in general is that we don’t account for improvement. CM Punk has to be treated like a rookie, and one that can learn and improve. He’s 39 years old, but a world class athlete (regardless of what you think about professional wrestling in and of itself). There’s also no doubt that he has the means and opportunity to access high level training. Duke Roufus doesn’t waste his own time at the MMA Academy.

A lot of the bets at UFC 225 are tight, but this one is just fun for me. I warned you – Jackson is the smarter take. I just want to bet on CM Punk while I can.

Bonus Pick – Alistair Overeem +145 over Curtis Blaydes -170
Headlining the prelims on FoxSports1 is a big bout featuring a pair of heavyweights that probably deserve to be on the main card. Overeem is coming off a seismic loss to Francis Ngannou at UFC 218 and is sort of floating around in no man’s land since his other recent loss was against current heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic (who will fight Daniel Cormier at UFC 226!!!). Overeem has surreal talent, but killed his momentum in a decisive loss to Ngannou.

Blaydes is basically 10-1 SU in his career, having only lost to Ngannou two years ago. He also had a fight ruled no-contest because he smoked weed, but he won that fight. In other words, he’s the perfect litmus test to see if Overeem is worth considering down the road as a potential heavyweight contender. My main hang up is that Overeem is a decade older than Blaydes, but the favorite’s experience is thin against top flight competition and I’m not sure if the former K-1 Champion is a step to far for the young man.

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