UFC 286 Odds, Model Predictions & Picks: Betting Previews for All 15 Fights (Saturday, March 18)
Justin Setterfield/Getty Images. Pictured: UFC featherweight Makwan Amirkhani
On Saturday at UFC 286, the UFC returns to The 02 Arena in London for a welterweight title showdown between champion Leon Edwards and Kamaru Usman.
The preliminary card begins at 12:30 p.m. ET (9:30 a.m. PT) on ESPN+ and UFC Fight Pass before simulcasting on ESPNews at 3 p.m. ET. The five-fight main card will commence at 5 p.m. ET via ESPN+ pay-per-view.
After examining all betting options, a typical UFC card can offer substantial actionable value.
So, in addition to moneylines and over/unders, I’ll break down how I plan to bet every fight on the card, including exact winning methods, winning round props, and whether or not the match will go to a decision or finish inside the distance.
UFC 286 Projected Odds
Below, you can find my fair odds moneyline projection for each of Saturday’s 15 bouts. In the next section, you’ll discover forecasts for those fights to finish inside the distance or for each fighter to win by Decision, knockout, or submission.
Odds as of Friday and via DraftKings.
UFC 286 Prop Projections
In addition to creating a crowdsourced projection for moneyline plays, I also collect data on each fighter to win by Decision, knockout, or submission, enabling us to determine fair odds for each fight to go the distance or for each fighter to win inside of the distance.
Zerillo’s Favorite UFC 286 Bets
I will pass on betting on the card’s first three fights: Veronica Macedo vs. Julianna Miller, Ludovit Klein vs. Jai Herbert, and Luana Carolina vs. Joanne Wood. I don’t see any actionable betting angles on those fights, either from a pre-fight or live betting perspective, aside from potentially including Juliana Miller by submission (projected +148, listed +160 at FanDuel) in a round-robin.
In Jake Hadley vs. Malcolm Gordon, I like the Englishman, Hadley, to get the finish. I projected his inside-the-distance prop at -150; I could not place my bet before the line moved up from -135 after Gordon missed weight on Friday. I loved the read before the weight miss – and would have allocated a larger wager at -135; Gordon is incredibly fragile and reacts poorly to clean strikes while Hadley is highly durable, has the wrestling advantage, and he will relentlessly push forward. Bet Hadley to win inside the distance up to -150.
Next, we get to a streak of underdog bets, starting with Christian Leroy Duncan vs. Dusko Todorovic. Todorovic is my favorite underdog on the card. I expect the range striking to be competitive with Todorovic’s output matching Duncan’s power. But I believe that Todorovic retains all of the grappling upsides. He will look to keep this fight in the clinch and wear on Duncan, or try to drag his opponent to the mat. The main concern is his chin and striking defense. Todorovic fights out of a karate stance and keeps his hands low, so he is highly hittable. Duncan is the better athlete. Todorovic is the superior fighter; I like him down to +170 – but fair warning: If he loses, it will likely be violent.
Lerone Murphy vs. Gabriel Santos should be a fun fight with Santos, the LFA champion, taking on one of the most overlooked prospects in the UFC. Unfortunately, Santos took this bout on a week’s notice. Otherwise, I would give more credence to his winning a decision. Still, this could be a chaotic, high-variance affair based on the matchup alone. So, I will split a half unit between projected edges on Santos’ moneyline and the fight to end inside the distance (to +150 and +100, respectively).
Jafel Filho vs. Muhammad Mokaev may be parlay material for some bettors; still, I view Filho as the clear value side of the matchup. Mokaev is an excellent wrestler with bottomless cardio – and he may control Filho for dominant stretches of the fight, but he doesn’t land a ton of damage on opponents when he is in control positions, and I unless that changes, I am expecting him to lose a close decision – at some point – against a fighter who is more active in the brief periods where he has separation. Sprinkle Filho’s moneyline at +525 or better.
Our underdog streak continues with Yanal Ashmoz vs. Sam Patterson, a matchup between UFC debutants. Patterson owns a 10-inch reach advantage but won’t make the most of it. I’m not high on either of these fighters as prospects, and frankly, I think this is a low-level fight, given its placement on the card. That said, I’ll buy back some of the line movement against Ashmoz down to +215; unless he gets finished with a guillotine, this fight should be close and competitive.
I didn’t expect to bet on Chris Duncan vs. Omar Morales; it’s a pick’em fight, and the total aligns with my projection. However, compared to the market, I show a very slight value on Morales to win by decision (projected +292, listed +350). This fight should be a war, and I expect to see some high-variance exchanges. Still, I view Duncan as slightly more finish reliant than Morales, and I will sprinkle that winning method prop at the current price point.
In the featured prelim, Makwan Amirkhani vs. Jack Shore, I’m backing Amirkhani with a familiar betting strategy. “Mr. Finland” typically gets to the same dangerous positions in Round 1 against every opponent before fading drastically by the middle of his fights. Still, he seemingly has opportunities to finish all of his fights early, and Amirkhani to win in Round 1 (+1400 at DraftKings), to win inside the distance (projected +465, listed +650 at DraftKings), and even his money line (down to +360) are each viable bets. I wouldn’t risk more than a quarter unit across those three wagers, and I would look to buy out with a live bet on Shore after Round 1.
In the main card opener, Roman Dolidze vs. Marvin Vettori, I think Dolidze is finally running into kryptonite. Vettori is a far better minute-winner but also incredibly durable. Dolidze carries considerable power – and has shown some crafty submission skills, so perhaps he can create some more magic. Still, I’m not sure there are worse matchups for him at the top of the middleweight division right now beyond Vettori and Robert Whittaker. I like Vettori as a parlay piece, and I’m pairing him with the other favorite I show value in for Saturday, Rafael Fiziev. If you’d prefer to bet him straight, I wouldn’t play Vettori beyond -280.
I’ll take another small dog shot in Casey O’Neill vs. Jennifer Maia. O’Neill is younger, faster and a far superior athlete. Still, she is also coming off of knee surgery and taking a significant step up in competition against a former title challenger. She seems likely to outpace Maia with volume (and a five-inch reach advantage) or land takedowns and get on top since Maia is content to look for submissions off her back. And I understand O’Neill’s favoritism as a result. Still, Maia is exceptionally well-rounded and could potentially take advantage of mistakes from a green fighter; for all of O’Neill’s offensive gifts, she is highly hittable, and I could also see her getting caught in an armbar from guard. I would bet Maia to +135. If she were younger – and had less chance of unexpected decline due to age – with the same skillset, this would be a much larger wager.
I don’t show any projected value on the featured bout, and I’m not interested in betting on Bryan Barberena vs. Gunnar Nelson. My lean is Nelson by submission, but he has had one fight since 2019, and he held back control for eight minutes and never really attempted to finish his opponent.
My favorite bets for Saturday are in Justin Gaethje vs. Fiziev. You can see my complete analysis in our staff’s UFC 286 best bets. Technically, I see value in the fight to end inside the distance (projected -220, listed -200), but I prefer the value on Fiziev’s moneyline, his knockout prop, or his inside-the-distance prop. You can place those wagers down to -250, +120, and +105, respectively.
Lastly, check out my full fight preview for Leon Edwards vs. Kamaru Usman, the UFC 286 main event, and the welterweight title bout headlining UFC 286. I’m currently waiting on a better price for Usman pre-fight or looking for a live entry after the first round.
- Dusko Todorovic (+185, 0.5u) at DraftKings
- Gabriel Santos (+150, 0.25u) at Caesars
- Jafel Filho (+605, 0.1u) at WynnBet
- Yanal Asmouz (+240, 0.25u) at FanDuel
- Makwan Amirkhani (+400, 0.1u) at DraftKings
- Jennifer Maia (+150, 0.25u) at DraftKings
- Rafael Fiziev (-230, 0.5u) at DraftKings
- Jake Hadley wins Inside the Distance (-150, 0.25u) at DraftKings
- Murphy/Santos, Fight ends Inside the Distance (+108, 0.25u) at FanDuel
- Omar Morales wins by Decision (+350, 0.1u) at DraftKings
- Makwan Amirkhani wins in Round 1 (+1400, 0.05u) at DraftKings
- Makwan Amirkhani wins Inside the Distance (+650, 0.1u) at DraftKings
- Rafael Fiziev wins Inside the Distance (+140, 0.75u) at DraftKings
- Marvin Vettori & Rafael Fiziev (-106, 0.5u) at Caesars
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