Fri 12/02/2021 - 04:00 EST

UFC 258 Betting Guide

UFC 258 Betting Guide

Kamaru Usman versus Gilbert Burns — it’s finally happening at UFC 258! The on-again, off-again title match is the pay-per-view headliner and we have a complete guide to the fight, plus others on the card. You’ll want to see which bets we like most come fight night!

We've assembled a UFC 258 betting guide to help you navigate the card ahead of the February 13 date. But before we get to that, let's take a peek at how online bookmakers are handicapping the main card fights:

Kamaru Usman-270+230Gilbert Burns
Alexa Grasso-139+119Maycee Barber
Mallory Martin-160+140Polyana Viana

We have free UFC betting picks on each of the above three fights throughout this article. There's a lot of ground to cover so let's jump right into it:

Usman Enters As The Convincing Favorite

To no one's surprise, the reigning, defending UFC welterweight champion, Usman, has strong support from the bookies in this one. Here's a guy who has not only never lost whilst in the UFC (11-0 mark in the promotion), but he's hardly been challenged during that impeccable run.

Nine of Usman's 11 UFC victories have come via unanimous decision, while the other two were knockouts. The most recent 'W was against Jorge Masvidal in convincing fashion at UFC 251 — a match originally slated for Burns before a positive COVID-19 test forced him out. 

Burns, however, poses some threats to the current champion despite the less-than-favorable betting line. For one, Burns and Usman know each other inside out. They're long-time training partners and according to Burns, have over 200 sparring sessions against one another.

Beyond familiarity, Burns is a tough matchup, too. He might be the most well-rounded opponent of Usman's esteemed career, which says a lot. Think about it, Burns can go to the ground. He's got the Brazilian jiu-jitsu background, of course. He can also stand-up and strike with the best of them.

Burns' all-around fight ability has been on full display over the past 26 months. During this span, he's 6-0 with four unanimous decision victories of his own, the last of which coming against Tyron Woodley.

Given the matchup, given the training history, we honestly think this fight can go either way. Burns at +230 offers plenty of value, but if we had to pick a winner, Usman has the slightest of edges. More on the reason for that in the next section.

Betting pick to make: Usman (-270)

Prop Bet To Keep An Eye On — Method Of Victory

The exact method of victory — decision, submission, or knockout — prop always deserves attention, especially in a razor-close matchup like this main event. The best part of this prop bet is you can win no matter which fighter prevails, so long as the chosen victory method pans out.

We're extremely confident this title fight goes to the judge's scorecard. Of the 10 fights these two have been in since November 2018, seven went to decision. We sense UFC 258 will be much of the same for the reasons outlined before (familiarity and closeness of matchup). 

As for why we're giving Usman the upper-hand, it's simple: his proven gas tank. Five-round championship wins against Woodley (who he originally earned the belt from) and Masvidal proves that. Not that Burns doesn't have a motor of his own, but it's much less proven than the championship holders. 

We could see Usman deploy a gameplan against Burns not unlike the one he utilized versus Masvidal. In that one, Usman wore Masvidal out against the cage and with polarizing foot stomps. Whether you like it or not, that's a smart strategy that lets Usman leverage his bell-to-bell endurance. 

Betting pick to make: Decision as the method of victory

Toss-Up Between Women Flyweights

Oddsmakers are almost split in the semi-main event featuring Grasso (-139 favorite) and Barber (+119 underdog), and rightfully so given the matchup's uncertainty.

For one, this is Grasso's only second fight in the weight class. She won her debut back in August to improve her career record to 12-3. For Barber, it's her long-awaited return to the octagon after sustaining her first-ever loss back in January 2020 in a bout where she also injured her knee in the process. 

Something's got to give, right? For us, we like Grasso's chances because she's the fresher of the two. If we learned anything from Conor McGregor's stunning loss at UFC 257, it's that recent ring experience matters big time. The long octagon lay-off just gives us too much pause about Barber.

Betting pick to make: Grasso (-139)

Women Strawweights Round Out Card

The only other announced match — as of February 1 — on the main card features Martin and Viana. The eventual winner can shoot up the strawweight rankings, which is currently topped by title-holder Zhang Weili.

We're backing Martin here. More than anything else, Viana's recent showings don't evoke much betting confidence on our end. Viana has dropped three of her last four fights and is in a clear decline against more formidable opponents. Martin is the easy bet to make!

Betting pick to make: Mallory Martin (-160)

Welp, that's all the advice we have regarding UFC 258. In case you're looking for more UFC odds on other main card or preliminary bouts, you can find them at one of the sportsbooks below.

These same betting sites can also take your bets for this UFC card and the ones to follow. Signing up for an account takes minutes and upon loading money into the said account, you can earn a hefty welcome bonus on behalf of the site. Find all the details about sign-up bonuses that await you at the table below!

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