UFC 219: Cyborg vs. Holm
Date: December 30
Arena: T-Mobile Arena
City:Las Vegas, NV
The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) will be back in Las Vegas, NV for the final card of the year with UFC 219: Cyborg vs. Holm. The 10-fight card is scheduled to kick off with preliminary action on UFC Fight Pass at 7 p.m. ET. Prelims will continue on FOX Sports 1 at 8 p.m., with the main card getting going on Pay Per View at 10 p.m. If interested in wagering on any bouts for these fight cards, all betting lines are made available at Several Bookmakers.
Here are my plays…
Lightweight bout: Khabib Nurmagomedov (-280) vs. Edson Barboza (+240)
Gabe’s Thoughts: At the current odds, I believe we are looking at a “dog or pass” situation. I think Barboza is capable of upsetting Nurmagomedov and handing him his first professional mixed martial arts defeat. Should he get the win, I think it will most likely be by early knockout, which I see as a likely outcome to this 155 pound contest. Should he fail to get the early finish, I think Nurmagomedov will find the takedown and end up finishing the fight himself on the mat, by either T/KO or submission. Barboza will largely be a fish out of water on the mat with Nurmagomedov, so I think there is a good chance he will secure the finish; either finding a choke or battering his way towards a TKO stoppage. I think Barboza holds value at +240, but I feel the play with most value here is the Total of Under 2.5 rounds at +110, as I think this fight ends inside the distance within 12 and a half minutes of action, regardless of who gets his hand raised.
Gabe’s Call: Nurmagomedov by T/KO (punches, 3:46 round 2)
Gabe’s Recommended Play: Under 2.5 rounds (+110)
Women’s Strawweight bout: Cynthia Calvillo (-255) vs. Claudia Esparza (+215)
Gabe’s Thoughts: I slightly favor Calvillo to pick up the decision in this contest, but that is to say that I believe it will hit the judges’ scorecards more often than not, though I do expect Calvillo to present some scares for Esparza with her submission attempts. I think the majority of this bout will take place on the mat, where I expect things to be competitive, though I think Esparza will find success in spending time in top position, though Calvillo could potentially win rounds off her back with her slick submission attempts. I don’t think she will tap Esparza, but it may be enough to impress the judges enough to see the round(s) in her favor. I think Esparza holds value at her current offering price of +215 and think she is worth a play, however the play I feel confident in recommending is the Total of Over 2.5 rounds at -210, as I think this fight will be decided by the judges at Octagon-side. Again, I believe there will be some scares, so if you’re betting Esparza or the Over, you may want to skip watching this one and save yourself the anxiety attack.
Gabe’s Call: Calvillo by Split Decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-29) Gabe’s Recommended Play: Over 2.5 rounds (-210)