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UFC 279 Odds, Pick & Prediction for Johnny Walker vs. Ion Cuțelaba: Bet This Fighter to Win by Stoppage (Saturday, September 10)

UFC 279 Odds, Pick & Prediction for Johnny Walker vs. Ion Cuțelaba: Bet This Fighter to Win by Stoppage (Saturday, September 10) article feature image
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Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC. Pictured: UFC light heavyweight Ion Cutelaba

  • The UFC 279 PPV main card kicks off with Johnny Walker vs. Ion Cutelaba.
  • The light heavyweights are expected to put on a quick, wild slugfest.
  • Sean Zerillo explains how to capitalize on a potential fast stoppage.

Johnny Walker vs. Ion Cuțelaba Odds

Walker Odds
+165
Cuțelaba Odds
-200
Over/Under
1.5 (+110 / -150)
Venue
T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas
Time
10 p.m. ET
Channel
ESPN+ Pay-per-view
Odds as of Friday and via BetMGM.

The UFC 279 main card kicks off with a potentially action-packed light heavyweight bout when Johnny Walker clashes with Ion Cutelaba.

The defense-adverse wildmen have struggled in recent bouts, in part due to their crowd-pleasing but often-reckless styles.

While fans expect fireworks in this one, what should bettors prepare to see? Let’s look at the matchup.

Tale of the Tape

Walker Cuțelaba
Record 18-7 16-7-1
Avg. Fight Time 7:17 7:53
Height 6’6″ 6’1″
Weight (pounds) 205 lbs. 205 lbs.
Reach (inches) 82″ 75″
Stance Orthodox Southpaw
Date of birth 3/30/1992 12/14/1993
Sig Strikes Per Min 3.45 4.81
SS Accuracy 58% 42%
SS Absorbed Per Min 2.78 3.39
SS Defense 42% 48%
Take Down Avg 0.23 4.75
TD Acc 100% 62%
TD Def 62% 79%
Submission Avg 0.7 0.0

Cutelaba seems like a better fighter than his recent 1-3-1 record in the promotion would suggest. And he seemingly possesses a significant wrestling advantage (7.6 takedown attempts per 15 minutes, 62% accuracy) over Walker (62% takedown defense), a rangy striker who owns a seven-inch reach advantage in this fight.

Cutelaba is extremely reckless and tends to fight at an unsustainable pace. His high-effort style tends to wear on himself more than on his opponents, and his effectiveness often wanes after the first five to seven minutes of his bouts.

Walker’s chin is a significant concern, though. The Brazilian sustained a brutal knockout against Jamahal Hill in February – the fourth of his career – and it now seems like he can fold on any clean exchange.

Johnny Walker fight week pic.twitter.com/pupmKuU9GV

— TB (@Bfalase) September 5, 2022

I expect Cutelaba to look to grapple from the outset, where he can put Walker in bad positions and finish the fight with ground and pound.

Suppose he’s unable to land the takedowns. In that case, however, Cutelaba could exhaust himself and eventually get caught in space, trying to fire his looping hooks and overhands against Walker’s long straight punches.

Walker vs. Cuțelaba Pick

I project value both on Cutelaba’s moneyline and the Under. And as a result, I also show value on Cutelaba to win inside the distance (projected -141, listed -115 at MGM).

While I have no issue playing his moneyline at -202 or better – at a 2% edge compared to my projection (-221 implied), I see a more significant edge (closer to 5%) on his finish prop.

And I’ll combine that wager with the Under 1.5 rounds, just in case Walker bonks him.

The Pick: Ion Cutelaba wins Inside the Distance (-115, 0.5u at BetMGM) | Under 1.5 Rounds (-150, 0.5u at BetMGM)

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