UFC 286 Odds, Pick & Prediction for Marvin Vettori vs. Roman Dolidze: ‘Dog Barking in UFC 286 Main-card Opener (Saturday, March 18)

UFC 286 Odds, Pick & Prediction for Marvin Vettori vs. Roman Dolidze: ‘Dog Barking in UFC 286 Main-card Opener (Saturday, March 18) article feature image

Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC. Pictured: UFC middleweight Roman Dolidze of Georgia

Marvin Vettori vs. Roman Dolidze Odds

Vettori Odds-275
Dolidze Odds+230
Over/Under2.5 (-205 / +165)
VenueThe O2 Arena in London
Time5 p.m. ET
ChannelESPN+ PPV
Odds as of Thursday and via DraftKings.

In a main card bout at UFC 286 on Saturday, Marvin Vettori squares off against Roman Dolidze.

The No. 4 UFC middleweight contender, Vettori is now serving as a divisional gatekeeper against Dolidze, the rising No. 9 contender.

This scrap could have major ramifications in the ranking of the division, which should provide extra spice to this ESPN+ pay-per-view main-card opener.

Here's a look at the odds, as well as my Vettori vs. Dolidze pick.

Tale of the Tape

Avg. Fight Time16:279:06
Weight (pounds)185 lbs.185 lbs.
Reach (inches)74"76"
Date of birth9/20/19937/15/1988
Sig Strikes Per Min4.202.62
SS Accuracy44%47%
SS Absorbed Per Min3.582.06
SS Defense59%57%
Take Down Avg1.892.12
TD Acc44%52%
TD Def74%33%
Submission Avg0.62.1

The story of Vettori's UFC career is "good but not good enough." He beats the guys he is supposed to on his rise up the middleweight ladder, but once he gets near the top, he has been unable to get it done.

Going 3-2 over his last five fights, he boasts impressive victories over Paulo Costa, Kevin Holland and Jack Hermansson. However, over that span, he lost his title shot to Israel Adesanya and is coming directly off a loss to the No. 2 contender, Robert Whittaker.

Both of those losses came via unanimous decision, a common trend across Vettori's career due to his iron chin and strong grappling ability.

The Italian Dream! 🇮🇹@MarvinVettori kicking off our #UFC286 main card this Saturday! pic.twitter.com/kxQcTugHN5

— UFC Europe (@UFCEurope) March 16, 2023

As is typically the case for guys in similar roles to Vettori, he will apparently turn into the divisional gatekeeper between the elites and risers of the middleweights.

Enter Dolidze. With a 12-1 professional record, Dolidze comes into this scrap amid a four-fight winning streak. Possessing crazy power, Dolidze boasts three straight knockout wins over the likes of Kyle Daukaus, Phil Hawes and Hermansson.

However, an underrated part of Dolidze's game is his ability to scramble and find the neck during grappling exchanges. This skill will be essential against Vettori, a smart fighter who likely will try to turn this bout into a grappling match to avoid Dolidze's reach and power.

Roman Dolidze is a menace off his back

Using a calf slicer to transition to top position. pic.twitter.com/5upRVO65y9

— Ocelot MMA (@Ocelot_MMA) March 13, 2023

There are too many avenues to victory for the red-hot Dolidze to be priced as a +240 betting underdog, and he should be much closer to the +150 range. With his power, he could catch Vettori at any time.

But, with Vettori's chin and his grappling game plan, we could also see Dolidze lock in a submission off his back, something he almost did numerous times in his recent win over Hermansson. If this fight makes it to the scorecards, then Dolidze's probability of winning drops significantly, but with these judges, you just never know.

Vettori vs. Dolidze Pick

As an Italian-American, it pains me to go against Marvin "The Italian Dream" Vettori.

While I think Vettori should be favored and is more likely to win this fight, he should not be laying nearly three dollars on the moneyline against the surging Dolidze.

There are many avenues for Dolidze to win this fight, and it would be the perfect statement for the surging contender to make in his quest for the title.

I do think Vettori's fight IQ and chin will likely save him in this fight, but +230 is far too good to pass up on Dolidze.

The Pick: Roman Dolidze (+230 at DraftKings)

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