UFC Fight Night Odds & Picks: How to Bet Michael Chiesa vs. Neil Magny (Wednesday, Jan. 20)
Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC. Pictured: (L-R) Opponents Michael Chiesa and Neil Magny face off during the UFC weigh-in at Etihad Arena.
- UFC Fight Night offers a number of solid betting opportunities that are perfect for an afternoon in the middle of the week.
- Erich Richter breaks down how to bet the Michael Chiesa vs. Neil Magny fight.
- Check out Richter's full betting preview complete with updated odds and a pick below.
Michael Chiesa vs. Neil Magny Odds
The UFC is hosting a rare Wednesday morning card — the second of three events in a seven-day stretch on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi — which will culminate just after noon ET with the return of Michael “Maverick” Chiesa against UFC stalwart Neil Magny.
Neil “The Haitian Sensation” Magny had a jam-packed 2020 where he fought three times and picked up three decision victories. That’s a common theme for Magny, who has seen seven of his last nine victories come by decision.
So where’s the value in this matchup? Let’s analyze both fighters and find out.
Tale of the Tape
|Avg. Fight Time||8:55||12:10|
|Weight (pounds)||170 lbs.||170 lbs.|
|Date of birth||12/7/87||8/3/87|
|Sig Strikes Per Min||2.07||3.96|
|SS Absorbed Per Min||1.95||2.15|
|Take Down Avg||3.84||2.63|
Both men are riding three-fight win streaks. However, this will be Chiesa’s first Octagon trip in 360 days. Chiesa looked fantastic prior to having knee surgery, but has been on the shelf since going under the knife. How he looks coming out of the injury and prolonged layoff will be an X-factor, and Chiesa said there were complications with the surgery in an interview with MMAFighting.com.
Magny would be wise to cut down Chiesa’s lead leg and pick up a victory with his volume and otherworldly cardio. His size difference poses an immediate threat to Chiesa, who will attempt to bring the fight to the ground by any means necessary.
Magny is 6-foot-3 — somehow 170 pounds — and has an 80-inch reach.
Magny and Chiesa do have common opponents: Rafael dos Anjos. That was Chiesa’s last fight before undergoing surgery, and he was able to easily land takedowns, control the fight on the ground, and cruise to a unanimous decision. Magny’s bout with dos Anjos was longer ago — 2017 — and he was submitted via arm-triangle.
Chiesa’s success against dos Anjos is a roadmap to a win over Magny. He’ll need to land takedowns early and often to control the fight and avoid a standup battle, which clearly favors Magny.
When looking at the last few opponents for these two fighters we see Magny has had much tougher tests than Chiesa. He has defeated Li Jianliang, Anthony Rocco Martin and Robbie Lawler is his last three fights. Much more formidable than Chiesa’s last three opponents of dos Anjos, Carlos Condit and Diego Sanchez, all three of whom have seen better days in the Octagon.
It is worth mentioning that Magny’s last two decisions wins were at the UFC Apex Center, a much smaller cage than the one in Abu Dhabi. The finish rates in those cages are higher, but Magny was still able to pull off impressive decision victories.
Chiesa vs. Magny Betting Pick
Neil Magny comes in at -145 via BetMGM on the moneyline, or 59% implied. I would absolutely play the moneyline on this fight for Magny, who is rounding into contender form. There is also significant value in this fight to hit the judges scorecards.
On FanDuel, the fight to go to decision has significant value at -136, or 57.63% implied. I would bet this prop as high as -165 as it seems unlikely that either fighter achieves a knockout victory.
The only way that I see this fight not going to the judges scorecards is a submission by Chiesa, who is very slick on the ground. Chiesa lands 3.84 takedowns per 15 minutes and 1.1 submission attempts per UFC Stats.
We know that Chiesa will attempt to submit Magny, but getting an opponent with Magny’s size down is no walk in the park. Magny’s 80-inch reach should help him keep his distance from takedowns and land significant strikes. This has helped Magny in the past, as he defends takedowns at a solid 60% rate. He also lands 3.96 significant strikes per minute compared to just 2.07 from Chiesa.
There is value on Magny to win this fight by decision as well — he’s +160 to win via decision on BetMGM (best odds on the market). This is the most likely outcome for Magny and is only 38.46% implied. I’d be willing to bet this prop up to +130 or 43.48% as Magny wins his fights almost exclusively by decision.
The Pick: Fight Goes the Distance (-136) | Magny by Decision +160