Dana White’s Contender Series 32 takes place on Tuesday, September 8 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada. The offshore sportsbooks recently opened up the betting odds for the full card, and here they are.
Opening Odds For Dana White’s Contender Series 32
Leomana Martinez -125
Drako Rodriguez -105
Phil Hawes -210
Khadzhimurat Bestaev +170
Cameron Church -145
Sherrard Blackledge +115
Tafon Nchuwki -190
Al Matavao +160
Aliaskhab Khizriev -200
Henrique Shigemoto +160
Here are my initial thoughts on the Opening Odds For Dana White’s Contender Series 32:
- At bantamweight, Martinez (6-1) takes on Rodriguez (6-1) in a battle of young fighters with identical records. The 24-year-old Martinez is an LFA veteran who has won five straight fights by knockout and all six of his pro victories have come by stoppage, with just a split decision loss. The 24-year-old Rodriguez is a King of the Cage veteran who has won two straight fights and is perfect in his career outside of a loss to UFC fighter Tony Gravely. This looks like a really close fight between two similar fighters. I lean Martinez, but it’s a very slight lean.
- In a middleweight bout, Hawes (7-2) faces off with Bestaev (10-3). The 31-year-old Hawes is a very experienced veteran, having competed on The Ultimate Fighter, Bellator, WSOF, and even on the Contender Series in 2017, where he suffered a KO loss to Julian Marquez. Since then he has won three straight fights by stoppage. As for Bestaev, he’s a veteran of Gladiator Challenge and rides a two-fight win streak into this contest. This looks like another close fight between two guys who are offensively gifted by defensively challenged. Due to his edge in big-fight experience, I would favor Hawes here, but Bestaev is certainly a live dog in this one.
- At lightweight, Church (4-0) fight Blackledge (4-0). The 29-year-old Church is a perfect 4-0 since starting his pro career in April 2019 with four stoppage wins. As for the 27-year-old Blackledge, he’s also 4-0 since starting his pro career in November 2018. It’s another close fight and while my slight lean is to Church it’s hard to be super confident in either guy here.
- In a light heavyweight bout, Nchuwki (3-0) takes on Matavao (8-2). The 25-year-old Nchuwki is a perfect 3-0 with three knockouts since making his pro debut in March 2019, including a TKO win over new UFC fighter William Knight. As for Matavao, he’s an Alaska FC vet who is on a four-fight win streak. I am very high on Nchuwki and while I would like to see more of his cardio, I like his ability to knock his opponents out, and I believe he finishes this fight, too.
- And finally, at middleweight, we have Khizriev (12-0) against Shiguemoto (13-3-1). The 30-year-od Khizriev is undefeated as a pro and is coming off of a first-round TKO win over UFC veteran Rousimar Palhares. The fight was in November 2018 so he has had a long layoff heading into this fight, but you can’t ignore how impressive his record is. As for the 31-year-old Shiguemoto, he’s a 13-year MMA veteran who rides an eight-fight win streak into this fight. Although I like Shiguemoto’s experience, I can’t ignore how talented Khizriev is, and I believe he wins this fight.