UFC 253 comes packed with fireworks from both inside the octagon and the betting lines as middleweight king Israel Adesanya settles his grudge with the unbeaten destroyer, Paulo Costa. Both fighters are explosive strikers and with ill will all but guaranteeing heated exchanges. Co-headlining are red-hot fighters Dominick Reyes and Jan Blachowicz facing off for the vacant light heavyweight title. Let's break down these fights and see which bets we can cash.
UFC 229: McGregor vs Khabib Nurmagomedov
In what is being billed as the biggest fight in the history of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, this Saturday October 6th, at UFC 229 Conor McGregor (21-3) will try to win his lightweight title back against the undefeated and undisputed Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov (26-0), from Las Vegas, Nevada.
According the Khabib Nurmagomedov is approximately a 3/2 favorite (-155) and Conor McGregor is a 5/4 underdog (+125).
If history has taught us anything, it's that late money usually comes in on Conor, so if you wish to wager on the brash, Irishman you may want to grab that line now. And here's why you may wish to:
WHY CONOR WILL WIN THE FIGHT
In the dangerous chess match of Mixed Martial Arts one key advantage Conor has is in the reach advantage, of 74' compared to Khabib's 70' reach.
In a classic Striker vs Grappler match, Conor being the striker, with 18 of his 21 career victories coming by KO or TKO, having a 4 inch reach advantage may be the fine margin that lands him the shot at hitting Khabib with his knockout left hand.
Conor at his most effecient can use his leg kicks and ring movement to keep Khabib at a distance where the take down is not achievable and frankly that's his best chance. Eventually with Khabib desperate to get Conor to the ground, the dives forward in a way that leaves him open to a big shot.
That's not even to mention the mental game that Conor always wins at. In the 48 hours leading into the fight Khabib will be hearing nothing but Conor's trash talk trying to bore into his psyche, causing doubt and distraction in his opponent's mind.
WHY KHABIB WILL WIN THE FIGHT
Because the Eagle is cut from a different cloth and can not be mentally broken. Because coming from Dagestan, Russia builds a strength and fortitude that makes Khabib Nurmagomedov, an immovable object. Because historically in clashes between wrestlers and strikers, the wrestler usually wins.
We have seen Conor lose before. We have seen Conor unable to knock opponents out before. We have seen Conor empty his gas tank and get taken down to the ground and submitted.
We have never seen anything but Khabib win.
The general consensus is that the second Khabib gets his hands wrapped around Conor, this fight is over. To the extent that Conor can train with elite wrestlers to prepare, Khabib's wrestling is just on a level far superior. And even if Khabib scores an early take down and doesn't finish Conor, having to fend off the ground and pound will drain Conor's special knockout power leaving him a devenomized snake.
Plus not to mention that since Conor's last UFC fight in November 2016, he spent the last 2 years chasing around Floyd Mayweather, making movies and producing a line of Whiskey. While Khabib has been humbly building his Legacy.
Until I see Khabib lose, I can not bet against an undefeated Champion in the prime of his career, for all the reasons listed above.
PICK: Khabib Nurmagomedov (-155)
You can follow me on twitter @zahir_gilani
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