Stipe Miocic will be gunning for a fourth straight first-round victory Saturday when he puts his UFC heavyweight belt on the line against Junior dos Santos as a -140 UFC 211 betting favorite at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
“Stone Cold” claimed the UFC heavyweight crown in impressive fashion at UFC 198, ending Fabricio Werdum’s reign with a first-round knockout on punches, paying out as a +150 underdog and earning Performance of the Night honors for the third time in his career. Miocic followed up with another opening-round KO victory, laying out Alistair Overeem on punches as -145 chalk at UFC 203 to improve his professional MMA record to 16-2-0.
However, the champion has a score to settle in Saturday night’s matchup at American Airlines Arena in Dallas after dropping a unanimous decision as a +325 underdog in their first meeting at UFC on Fox 13 in December 2014.
Pegged as a +110 underdog on the UFC 211 odds, dos Santos looks to record consecutive victories in the octagon for the first time in seven fights. The former UFC heavyweight champion has struggled since losing the crown to Cain Velasquez at UFC 155 as -225 chalk.
“Cigano” rebounded by knocking out Mark Hunt as a -525 favorite at UFC 160 but came up short in his UFC 166 rematch with Velasquez, suffering a fifth-round TKO loss as a +170 underdog. Cigano also was knocked out by Overeem at UFC on FOX 17 before dominating Ben Rothwell in a UFC Fight Night Zagreb matchup pegged as a pick ’em at the sportsbooks.
The UFC women’s strawweight title also will be up for grabs at UFC 211 with champion Joanna Jędrzejczyk listed as the -185 betting favorite against challenger Jessica Andrade, who sports +150 odds.
“JJ” improved her pro record to a perfect 13-0-0 by claiming a unanimous decision over Karolina Kowalkiewicz as -450 chalk at UFC 205 and has gone the distance in three of her four title defenses.
Andrade rides a three-fight win streak, including a pair of victories inside the distance, but needed all three rounds to earn the win over Angela Hill as a massive -650 favorite at UFC Fight Night Houston and will be competing in a five-round contest for the first time in her UFC career.
In other UFC 211 action, Demian Maia battles fellow welterweight Jorge Masvidal in a clash listed as a pick ’em at the sportsbooks, while rising UFC featherweight star Yair Rodriguez is an intriguing +115 underdog as he aims for a ninth straight win in his battle with veteran Frank Edgar, who remains perched as -145 chalk.
Thumbnail photo via Kevin Jairaj/USA TODAY Sports Images
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