On Deck: Looking ahead to Li Jingliang vs. Khamzat Chimaev

At UFC 267, a very intriguing welterweight clash goes down on Fight Island as Li Jingliang welcomes back Khamzat Chimev to the Octagon.

UFC 267 Opening Odds:

Li Jingliang +210
Khamzat Chimaev -260

Current UFC 267 Odds (as of Sept. 16)

Li Jingliang +280
Khamzat Chimaev -350

Jingliang and Chimaev’s recent fights

Li Jingliang (18-6) returned to the win column in a big way as he knocked out Santiago Ponzinibbio back in January as a sizeable +260 underdog. Prior to that, he did drop a decision to Neil Magny after beating Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos and David Zawada by TKO and Daichi Abe by decision. Currently, he’s ranked at 11 in the UFC’s rankings and he also holds notable wins over Zak Ottow, Dhiego Lima, Frank Camacho, David Michaud, and Luke Jumeau.

Khamzat Chimaev (9-0) had an incredible 2020 and was supposed to fight Leon Edwards in December, January and March but Edwards got COVID in December and in January, Chimaev tested positive and was still dealing with the lingering effects in March. He did hint at possibly retiring but he will return after going 3-0 in the UFC last year with a 17-second KO win over Gerald Meerschaert, a first-round TKO win over Rhys McKee and a second-round submission victory over John Phillips.

Are the odds surprising?

When the fight was made, I thought Chimaev would be around a -225 favorite to his hype so to see him open at -260 wasn’t that big of a surprise. However, him being a near 4-to-1 favorite is surprising as he hasn’t fought in over a year and had a difficult time recovering from COVID so how that will impact him is to be seen.

Chimaev, however, has always gotten the support of the public as in his three UFC fights he closed at -600, -1250, and -625. Jingliang, meanwhile, has gotten some support as he was the betting favorite over Magny, but was a sizeable underdog to both Ponzinibbio and Zaleski dos Santos.

How might the odds change?

If Chimaev’s first three UFC fights tell us anything, it’s that he will continue to get the support of the public. People will likely throw him in parlays or just play him straight or with props on how he wins. As we get closer to the fight, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Chimaev close as a -400 favourite given how much action is already on him.

Written by Cole Shelton

Follow Cole on Twitter: @ColeShelton91



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