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Mon 01/04/2019 - 07:54 EDT

Blockbuster Bouts: UFC 236 Odds

Two interim belts will be on the line when the headliners step into the Octagon in UFC 236.

The anticipated event takes place on Saturday, April 13 at State Farm Arena in Atlanta, Ga. The main card airs live on pay-per-view starting at 10 p.m. ET.

Max Holloway, the reigning featherweight champ, gets a rematch with Dustin Poirier with the interim UFC Lightweight Championship up for grabs. These fighters met seven years ago in Holloway’s UFC debut. Poirier won by submission in the first round, but these are two completely different fighters today.

Holloway (-265) is the overwhelming pick in UFC Odds, while Poirier (+205) offers fantastic value (UFC 236 Odds provided by Bovada).

In the other co-main event, Robert Whittaker’s inability to defend is Israel Adesanya’s gain. After beating Anderson Silva, “The Last Stylebender” steps up to meet Kelvin Gastelum — the man that Whittaker was supposed to fight at UFC 234 — for the interim UFC Middleweight Championship.

Adesanya (-225), who is undefeated in 16 career bouts, is the most feared middleweight in the business. Gastelum (+175), who has a career record of 16-3, is on a two-fight winning streak.

A total of nine bouts are scheduled for the entire UFC 236 card.

UFC Odds Explained

UFC Betting Odds offered for fight night are currently money line wagers on your fighter of choice. As the event draws closer, prop bets will be posted on online sites like Bovada which will range from style of victory to the exact round the fight ends.

How do the odds work and what are the payoffs? Money line bets either have a positive (long shot) or negative (favorite) sign in front of the current odds. The number after a plus sign in front of the posted odds is the amount of profit a bettor earns on a $100 bet. The number after a negative sign in front of the posted odds is the amount a bettor must wager to earn a $100 profit.

Let’s use the interim Lightweight Championship fight as an example: Holloway (-265) is a huge favorite and a bettor must risk $265 to earn a $100 profit if Blessed is to win ($265 bet + $100 profit = $365 total return). Poirier (+205) offers great value, but obviously oddsmakers don’t think he will win ($100 bet + $205 profit = $305 total return).

If you’re a bettor who wants to risk a smaller portion of your bankroll, a $10 bet on Poirier returns $30.50, while a $10 bet on Holloway pays $13.80. As you can see from the odds, there is little return on a bet on Holloway.

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UFC Championship Predictions

This will be the first UFC pay-per-view to not be sold through U.S. television providers for residential customers. UFC has a new rights agreements with ESPN through 2025, so pay-per-views are now distributed exclusively through ESPN+.

This is also the fourth time Atlanta has hosted a UFC event. The last time the organization was here was July 2016.

Holloway -265 vs. Poirier +205

The 27-year-old Holloway, who is on a run of four straight knockout victories, has won 13 consecutive bouts. The reigning featherweight champion now tries to become a double champion as he moves into the lightweight category and faces Poirier.

Holloway, 20-3-0 all-time, has successfully defended his featherweight title on two occasions. His most recent victory was a December TKO over Brian Ortega. His last setback was an August 2013 loss to Conor McGregor.

Poirier, also a former featherweight, returned to the lightweight class in April 2015. The Diamond has gone 8-1-0-1 and won his last three fights by knockout. The 30-year-old fighter, who is 24-5 in his career, has earned fight-night bonuses in four of his past five fights.

“I feel like I’m very well-balanced and there’s not a place the fight can go that I don’t have an answer to something he’s doing,” Poirier said. “All I need is one mistake or one opportunity, and I’m going to take full advantage of it, and I can finish the fight again.”

Pick — Dustin Poirier (+205). Holloway is the obvious pick to win this match between two warriors, but Poirier seems overpriced for such a talented, violent fighter.

Adesanya -225 vs. Gastelum +175

Israel Adesanya joined the UFC in February 2018 and, in just over a year, gets his interim title shot in the middleweight class against Kelvin Gastelum. The 29-year-old Nigerian-born fighter has gone 5-0 in that time, including four fight-night bonus awards.

His most recent victory was a decision win over former UFC middleweight champ Anderson Silva in UFC 234 to push his career record to 16-0.

“Momentum’s a powerful force, and it keeps on rolling,” said Adesanya, who has breezed through UFC competition. “I’m going to roll over Kelvin.”

The 27-year-old Gastelum is 16-3-0 in his career, including two straight victories. He knocked out former middleweight champ Michael Bisping in November 2017 and then followed that with a split-decision win over Ronaldo Souza. He won fight-night bonuses in both of those outings.

This interim title fight is a battle of the powerful striker versus the talented grappler. If Gastelum cannot get inside of Adesanya’s reach, there is little way he can win the fight. As for Adesanya, he must keep this bout off the canvas.

Pick — Israel Adesanya (-225). This is Adesanya’s biggest test of his career, but he has answered every situation thrown his way so far.

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