UFC 223 Preliminary Card Opening Odds Reactions

UFC 223 takes place Saturday, April 7 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. It’s a stacked pay-per-view card featuring some incredible matchups and will surely be a popular ticket at the betting window. Here are the opening odds courtesy of the offshore sportsbooks for the preliminary card.

UFC 223 Preliminary Card Opening Odds

Karolina Kowalkiewicz -270
Felice Herrig +190

Ray Borg -230
Brandon Moreno +170

Joe Lauzon -245
Chris Greutzmacher +175

Evan Dunham -180
Olivier Aubin-Mercier +140

Ashlee Evans-Smith -230
Bec Rawlings +170

Alex Caceres -170
Artem Lobov +130

Devin Clark -120
Mike Rodriguez -120

Zabit Magomedshapirov -530
Kyle Bochniak +350

My reactions to the UFC 223 preliminary card opening odds: 

– Kowalkiewicz vs. Herrig is an important fight in the women’s strawweight division. Kowalkiewicz is coming off of a decision win over Jodie Esquibel but prior to that had lost two-straight fights, albeit to Joanna Jedrzejczyk and Claudia Gadelha. Herrig, meanwhile, is on a four-fight win streak and is an impressive 5-1 overall in the UFC. While most will likely be taking Kowalkiewicz to get the win here, I think Herrig has seriously improved as a mixed martial artist, and I think she’s worth looking at as the underdog in this spot.

– Lauzon has not been impressive in recent years, having lost three of his last four fights, including a brutal TKO loss to Clay Guida in his last outing. Greutzmacher hasn’t been impressive either with two-straight submission losses via rear-naked choke. The UFC is likely hoping to give Lauzon a matchup that he can win by submission, but I’m not so sure. Greutzmacher has shown some finishing ability in the past and Lauzon is very chinny at this point of his career. We’ll have to see how the line moves, but this looks like a dog-or-pass situation at first glance.

– Dunham is one of the most underrated lightweights in UFC histroy and is unbeaten over his last five fights. OAM has won three-straight fights, but Dunham’s level of competition has been much higher. That being said, Dunham is 36 now. He still hasn’t slowed down yet but at some point he will. I’m not sure if this is the time to fade him, though. OAM will be a trendy dog pick on this card, but Dunham is a guy I always pick to win and for the most part he comes through. If the odds continue to drop on him I’ll feel even better about Dunham in this spot.

– Lobov and Caceres are both fighting for their jobs. Lobov is 2-4 in the UFC and Caceres is 1-3 in his last four fights. Both guys are just clinging to a roster spot at this point. That being said, this might be a spot to go with Lobov for a rare UFC win. He has the better chin in this fight and has more power, and we’ve seen Caceres get tagged many times in the past. It’s likely best to stay away from this bout either way, but my initial lean would be towards Lobov as a dog.

– It’s not surprising at all to see Magomedshapirov as a huge favorite over Bochniak. The Russian is a future title contender at featherweight and is already 2-0 in the UFC with two-finshes and has won 10-straight fights overall. It’s likely that other fighters turned down the opportunity to fight him. So you have to give Bochniak credit for stepping up, but still. Bochniak is 2-2 in the UFC and overall hasn’t really impressed with both his wins coming by close decision. This looks like another overmatched opponent for Magomedovshapirov, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him get to 10-1 by the time the odds close as this is a mismatch on paper.

Written by Adam Martin.

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