UFC 256 — the last pay-per-view of the year — features a familiar headliner in Deiveson Figueiredo. He just main evented the previous UFC 255 and now has a 21-day turnaround in his next title defense. Tony Ferguson is also in action in the semi-main event. We preview both fights, plus offer betting advance in advance of the December 12 card!
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UFC 255 Betting Picks
If you're looking for UFC 255 betting picks — free ones at that — then you've come to the right place. But first, let's take a quick peek at the current odds being offered by online sportsbooks:
Keep in mind, lines should shift between now and the November 21 show date. Always stay on top of betting odds by visiting online bookies like Bovada.
Outside of up-to-the-minute odds, Bovada and like-minded bookmakers also have promotions to take advantage of. Common deals include sign-up bonuses which can net you hundreds to thousands of dollars in free play upon creating an account at these sportsbooks.
Now that we got that pertinent information out of the way, let's talk UFC 255 betting strategy. Here are our card predictions:
Figueiredo The Big Favorite In First Title Defense
Both these fighters enter the fight scorching-hot. The 125-pound champion Figueiredo pounded Joseph Benavidez into oblivion twice this year — a first-round submission and second-round TKO — as part of a four-fight win streak. Perez has won three consecutive bouts of his own, the last two coming in the opening round.
Yet, oddsmakers aren't giving Perez much of a chance in the main event. Off rip, it makes sense since Perez's last loss came again Benavidez of all fighters in a first-round TKO. He's also a last-minute replacement for Cody Garbrandt, who tore his bicep a month ago.
We largely agree with that sentiment. But at about one-to-three odds to win, what value is there in betting Figueiredo straight up? Not much.
To get more bang for your buck, you'll have to resort to the prop betting section. If so, look for the trusty method of victory prop — knockout, submission, or decision.
We see Figueiredo ending it with a mid-fight submission, we really do. Three of Perez's five career losses have come from tap out, which plays right into Figueiredo's deadly jiu-jitsu ways.
Betting pick to make: Figueiredo by submission
Does Maia have any chance at the upset over Shevchenko?
To answer the above question, there's always a chance. But is a realistic one is the better question? In Maia's case, no, not really.
Look, you'll rarely find a UFC co-main event, especially one that's a title fight, with as staggering odds as this one. However, that should speak to reigning champion Shevchenko's sheer dominance more than anything else.
Since entering the UFC in 2015, Shevchenko has run through everyone not named Amanda Nunes (whose given her the only two losses of her UFC career). As the number-three pound-for-pound fighter in the whole women's division, she's reeled off fight straight wins.
There's no question Shevchenko comes out victorious come UFC 255. Like the main event, you'll need to find other ways to make money off this given the -1400 betting line.
We'd once again suggest the method of victory prop, but that's a tricky one with Shevchenko. As her career shows, Shevchenko can win in a multitude of ways. Among her 19 total wins, seven have come from submission, six through KO, and another six via decision so it's a real toss-up.
At the very least, a Shevchenko win should be part of a multi-leg parlay for the whole event. Pair it with a Figueiredo victory and the next two picks we have for you.
Betting pick to make: Shevchenko (preferable as part of a parlay)
Another Flyweight Fight, This Time Between A Pair of Brandon's
The winner of this fight puts himself in the driver's seat for a title fight at flyweight (after Garbrandt, obviously). Given the predicament and these two's match styles, expect an all-out war worthy of the fight of the night honor.
Our money is on Moreno. His rock-em-sock-em approach has him unbeaten in his last four fights out. Here's a guy who has never lost by submission or knockout before, which means Royval will likely have to outpoint him to earn the victory.
But here's the thing, the jury is still out on Royval. He's fought just twice in the octagon. Sure, those wins were impressive, but his limited sample size gives us pause — especially against an established warrior like Moreno.
Betting pick to make: Moreno (-190)
Craig vs. Rua Is A Coin-Toss Flip
On a fight card that's mostly lopsided betting wise, Craig-Rua is the rare toss-up bout. It's also a rematch. The two men slugged it out in a violent affair a year ago, which ended in a draw.
We re-watched the slugfest and honestly, we give the slightest edge to Rua. This time around, we think he'll prevail in the grudge match.
Approaching 20 years in MMA, Rua has faced and beaten some of the best light heavyweights around — Quinton Jackson, Alistair Overeem, Mark Coleman, Lyoto Machida, Chuck Liddell, and more. Sure, he's six years older than Craig, but his experience will give him the edge to win and put another bow on an all-time great run.
Betting pick to make: Rua (+155)
That brings our UFC 255 betting guide to a close. If you're ready to heed our gambling advice, you can do so at any of the listed sportsbooks below.
Even if you're new to online betting, getting started at any one of them is completely hassle-free. It takes only minutes to create an account, fund it, and get into sports betting!
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