UFC 257 Odds & Picks: How to Bet Dan Hooker vs. Michael Chandler (Saturday, Jan. 23)

UFC 257 Odds & Picks: How to Bet Dan Hooker vs. Michael Chandler (Saturday, Jan. 23) article feature image
Credit:

Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images. Pictured: Dan Hooker and Michael Chandler square off.

  • The UFC 257 co-main event features the much anticipated debut of Michael Chandler against veteran Dan Hooker.
  • Chandler enters as a slight underdog (+110 odds) and could put himself in postition for a title shot with a win.
  • Sean Zerillo explains why he's backing the favorite to win handily on Saturday night.

Dan Hooker vs. Michael Chandler Odds

Hooker odds
-143
Chandler odds
+110
Over/Under
2.5 (-124/-104)
Venue
Etihad Arena, Abu Dhabi
Time
Approx. 11:30 p.m. ET
Channel
ESPN PPV
Odds as of Friday evening and via PointsBet

After ruling the Bellator cage for the better part of the last decade, Michael Chandler will finally make his UFC debut in the co-main event of UFC 257, taking on veteran Dan Hooker in a lightweight bout.

Who has the edge, and where can you find betting value? I’ll break down the matchup and betting odds below, and you can find my full breakdown of Saturday’s card here.

Tale of the Tape

Hooker Chandler
Record 20-9 21-5
Avg. Fight Time 10:53 7:27
Height 6’0″ 5’8″
Weight (pounds) 155 lbs. 155 lbs.
Reach (inches) 75″ 71″
Stance Switch Orthodox
Date of birth 2/13/90 4/24/86
Sig Strikes Per Min 4.98 4.08
SS Accuracy 48% 47%
SS Absorbed Per Min 4.89 3.81
SS Defense 52% 52%
Take Down Avg 0.74 2.57
TD Acc 34% 41%
TD Def 79% 80%
Submission Avg 0.3 1.5
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Hooker vs. Chandler Betting Pick

Visually, Chandler seems like a well-rounded contender who is immediately ready for a Lightweight title shot. Still, he’s also 35-years-old, has shown cardio and durability concerns, and is technically a UFC debutant facing an octagon veteran (43% win rate for debutants).

While the late-career UFC jump has worked for some fighters (Alexander Volkov), other supposed stars (Ben Askren) have failed to find immediate success when making the past-their-prime move from the regional scene.

While Chandler offers the best wrestling that Hooker has ever faced, Hooker’s power is an equally new test for Chandler’s chin, as the Kiwi looked sharp in the early stages against Dustin Poirier (winning the first two rounds) and doesn’t have to worry about five rounds of output in this upcoming matchup.

His takedown defense (79%) will obviously be put to the test, and Chandler will hope to set traps and fire off power shots once Hooker starts over-committing to his low guard.

But Hooker can time Chandler’s entries into the pocket – he’s much longer (four inches taller, four inches of reach), and Chandler rarely fires off combinations.

While Chandler is the better athlete, Hooker is much more technical and creative. Expect to see some power knees up the middle – an offensive way to defend Chandler’s takedowns.

He’ll also look to fire his calf kick to try and slow Chandler down, though that kick could leave him exposed to takedown opportunities. If Hooker is landing that kick with consistency, it’s hard to imagine Chandler finding success.

But if Hooker struggles to deal with Chandler’s explosive movements and top control in the first two rounds, he’ll be too far behind on the cards and stuck looking for a late finish.

Hooker’s odds to win inside the distance (projected +152) offer slight value, and Hooker live after Round 1 looks like a solid angle. Still, I’m taking “The Hangman’s” moneyline up to -150, at a three percent edge compared to my projection (63%).

The Pick: Dan Hooker (-143, 1 unit) /Hooker to win Inside the Distance (+180, 0.25u)

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