Sean O’Malley vs. Thomas Almeida UFC 260 Odds, Pick & Prediction (Saturday, March 27)
Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC. Pictured (L-R): UFC fighters Sean O’Malley and Thomas Almeida.
- Bamtamweights Sean O’Malley and Thomas Almeida will square off Saturday at UFC 260.
- Both men are in need of a win Saturday and given their reputations, one could come in a flash for either side.
- See why Sean Zerillo is banking on a violent finish in this matchup.
Sean O’Malley vs. Thomas Almeida Odds
Rising Bantamweights Sean O’Malley and Thomas Almeida face off on the main card of Saturday’s UFC 260 event. Almeida is desperate for a win after dropping three in a row dating back to 2017, while O’Malley is looking to avenge the first loss of his career.
Below I preview the matchup and odds for what’s sure to be one of the most explosive bouts on the card. For more analysis on the rest of the card, you can check out my projections for the entire slate here.
Tale of the Tape
|Avg. Fight Time||7:08||8:27|
|Weight (pounds)||135 lbs.||135 lbs.|
|Date of birth||10/24/94||7/31/91|
|Sig Strikes Per Min||6.35||5.39|
|SS Absorbed Per Min||3.76||4.69|
|Take Down Avg||1.05||0.00|
I backed Almeida in his return to action against Jonathan Martinez last October, and the American picked apart the Brazilian with his movement and footwork. I don’t see how Almeida fares much better against O’Malley, who is much larger than both Martinez and Almeida, arguably more technical, and possesses significantly more power.
The hype around O’Malley’s skill isn’t without merit. He is massive for the Bantamweight division, and both as fast and powerful as they come.
The primary concern on the O’Malley side is his prior injuries — he hurt his foot twice in five UFC fights, including his first career loss to Marlon Vera last August.
O’Malley has tried to claim that it was a freak injury, but in hindsight, I do think Vera caused the injury with an early low kick:
And O’Malley has admitted that it was the same injury that he suffered in 2018 against Andre Soukhamthath.
The question is whether Almeida can target that same area, and potentially slow O’Malley down, or at least make him start thinking about checking that kick consistently. Almeida has started throwing leg kicks much more frequently in recent fights (landed 14-of-15 vs. Martinez), so perhaps he does target that same spot, and completely change the dynamic of the matchup.
Either way, this looks like a good spot to bet on violence. Almeida isn’t particularly durable himself, and O’Malley is live to close the show in a hurry against any straightforward striker.
He sets up his strikes extremely well and has the fluidity to pull off vicious combinations:
O’Malley vs. Almeida Pick
I projected this bout to end inside the distance 73% of the time, and I would play that prop up to -233 (implied 70%), at an edge of three percentage points.
You could also consider a bet on O’Malley to win inside the distance (projected -141, listed -120), but I wouldn’t double-dip — choose one position or the other.
The Pick: Fight ends inside the distance (-205)