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UFC 257 Odds & Picks: How to Bet Jessica Eye vs. Joanne Calderwood (Saturday, Jan. 23)

UFC 257 Odds & Picks: How to Bet Jessica Eye vs. Joanne Calderwood (Saturday, Jan. 23) article feature image

Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC. Pictured: Jessica Eye and Joanne Calderwood square off.

  • Jessica Eye and Joanne Calderwood will meet at UFC 257 on Fight Island and both women are looking to get back to their winning ways.
  • Calderwood is a small favorite (-125 odds) and Eye is listed at even money (+100 odds) entering Saturday's matchup.
  • Sean Zerillo explains why he's looking elsewhere to find the best betting value in this matchup.

Jessica Eye vs. Joanne Calderwood Odds

Eye odds
Calderwood odds
2.5 (-371/+270)
Etihad Arena, Abu Dhabi
Approx. 11 p.m. ET
Odds as of Saturday afternoon and via PointsBet.

It was a tough 2020 for Joanne Calderwood. The Scot was set to fight for a title opportunity, and a meeting with Valentina Shevchenko was scheduled for June. But in March, Shevchenko pulled out with a knee injury, the fight wasn’t rescheduled, and instead, Calderwood fought in August against Jennifer Maia. She lost via armbar submission in the first round.

Calderwood’s road back to the title picture begins Saturday against the woman from whom Shevchenko initially took the belt. Since dropping the women’s flyweight title in June of 2019, Eye has set foot in the Octagon twice, most recently dropping decision to Cynthia Calvillo last June. A win over Calderwood would help move her closer to another title opportunity.

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

Tale of the Tape

Eye Calderwood
Record 15-8 (1 NC) 14-5
Avg. Fight Time 14:23 10:45
Height 5’6″ 5’6″
Weight (pounds) 125 lbs. 125 lbs.
Reach (inches) 66″ 65″
Stance Orthodox Orthodox
Date of birth 7/27/86 12/23/85
Sig Strikes Per Min 3.65 6.17
SS Accuracy 36% 48%
SS Absorbed Per Min 3.54 4.31
SS Defense 58% 52%
Take Down Avg 0.40 1.90
TD Acc 45% 57%
TD Def 56% 55%
Submission Avg 0.6 0.5
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Eye vs. Calderwood Betting Pick

It’s interesting to see Calderwood both favored and come out as a favorite in the projected odds – Eye has seemingly fought against a higher level of competition and has far more haters than fans.

But Calderwood is the more versatile offensive striker and maintains a higher volume (6.17 to 3.65 strikes landed per minute) of strikes. She is also much more efficient (+1.86 strikes landed per minute, +12% accuracy, -6% defense) in terms of her overall offense.

Eye should be the better grappler and likely the more technical boxer, but wrestling hasn’t been a huge part of her game (0.4 takedowns landed per 15 minutes, 45% accuracy). Unless she changes her approach for Calderwood, I do expect JoJo to finish with more significant strikes.

In the past, Eye has drawn scorn for a boring style, which has led to 11 of her 13 UFC bouts going the distance, and I project this fight to go the full 15 minutes 87% of the time.

While I have yet to place a bet on that distance prop, in theory, I would like it up to -335, at a 10 percentage point edge relative to my projection. And while both fighters offer slight value to win by decision, it’s difficult to pick a side in this fight.

I prefer the Over 2.5 as a parlay piece, but I may lay the juice and bet the distance prop at -320.

The Pick: Parlay – Over 2.5 | Zhumagulov/Albazi Over 2.5 | Lentz/Evloev Over 2.5 (+149)

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