For the second time in the month of March, we have a UFC PPV event stacked with great fights. This weekend, at UFC 286, Leon Edwards and Kamaru Usman are headlining the event and are set to meet for their trilogy bout for the UFC welterweight title.
Follow along for an in-depth look into this main event fight and the other must-watch fights of UFC 286. An official betting analysis and prediction will also be provided for those who want assistance with their weekend betting slate.
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UFC: Edwards vs. Usman Betting Trends
- Leon Edwards is currently on a 15-fight unbeaten streak.
- Kamaru Usman suffered his first loss in 20 professional fights in his last octagon appearance. (Against Edwards)
- Edwards opened with virtually identical odds to their previous bout but is now a slightly more favorable underdog as betting lines are set to close. (+200)
- Usman is a sizable favorite yet again. The only fight in his UFC career in which he has been the underdog was in his first title fight against Tyron Woodley.
- Both Edwards and Usman have ten finishes in their professional MMA careers.
How To Bet on Edwards vs Usman
Betting on the UFC is very difficult to do because of the unpredictable nature of the sport. Anything can happen once that octagon gate shuts. There are too many variables in an MMA fight to predict the outcome exactly.
When preparing to make a bet on a big main event fight like this, make sure to do all the proper research leading up to your decision. Look at UFC stats and recent fight results, and (especially for this matchup) watch film with the fighters going up against a similar opponent.
In this instance, you can break down almost a full 40 minutes of Edwards and Usman fighting in the UFC. Even with all this information in our hands, it is still tough to predict what will happen in this upcoming bout.
Edwards has a ton of value in his moneyline pick, especially for being the one who got his hand raised in their last meeting. The oddsmakers clearly believe that head kick KO was more luck than proof of Edwards being the superior fighter.
With Usman being the -250 underdog with little value, make sure to scan the prop bets available at your local sportsbook for the best, most valuable UFC odds. Some interesting prop bets are available for UFC 286.
One of the most interesting lines available is Usman winning by decision at +120. That is literally what most experts will predict, and you can get that bet in plus odds.
Edwards vs. Usman Betting Picks
This matchup is going to go down as one of the most underrated of all time after this trilogy bout.
You have Leon Edwards in the middle of his prime, realizing his life-long dream and filled with this new confidence and champion aura around him. Then you have arguably one of the most dominating champions the UFC has seen, looking to get his belt back.
We are going with Leon Edwards this weekend, and here is the reason:
Edwards is a 31-year-old world champion, coming off of one of the most legendary finishes in UFC history and enjoying the fruits of his labor traveling around the world with his belt. Now he looks like he’s in the best shape of his life.
He now knows that he can beat Usman, even when he gasses out for rounds 2-4, and looks absolutely broken going to his corner between rounds 4 and 5. He has felt Usman recently, he knows he can take him down, and he knows he can finish the fight by touching Usman’s chin.
The Edwards moneyline is such a strong pick because of this newly found confidence and certainty around himself and his team. This fight is in front of his hometown fans and family; this fight just seems to be going all in favor of Edwards.
On a technical level, Edwards has proven to be the sharper, slicker striker on the feet in a lot of exchanges. The only answer Usman would have is with his pressure and wrestling attacks against the fence. With the respect Usman will have for Edwards’ power, this whole dynamic of Usman controlling the fight’s pace may change this weekend.
Also, let’s not forget that Usman is 35 with horrible knees. You can almost see in their last fight that Usman’s knees couldn’t handle that outside trip attempt by Edwards. It will be interesting to see how Usman’s durability holds up at this point in his career.
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Bonus! Other Fights Worth Placing a Bet On
UFC Lightweight co-main event: Justin Gaethje (+185) vs Rafael Fiziev (-220)
- This is the consensus pick for the fight of the night this weekend. You are going to be able to see two of the most dangerous, dynamic strikers in the game going at it in front of a rowdy London crowd. Don’t expect this one to go the distance.
UFC Welterweight main card bout: Gunnar Nelson (-355) vs Bryan Barberena (+280)
- It is always great to see Gunnar Nelson back in the octagon after being away for 3+ years. He will have a great dance partner in Barberena this weekend. Look for Nelson to show some high-level techniques in both the striking and grappling exchanges, along with Barberena constantly coming forward and being able to give/take massive shots.
UFC Women’s Flyweight bout: Casey O’Neill (-175) vs Jennifer Maia (+145)
- Casey O’Neill is back in the octagon after over a year off due to an injury. This is the perfect matchup for the 25-year-old rising star. She is going up against a battle-tested, big-name fighter in Maia. If O’Neill shows up in front of the bright lights, she should be a great pick to make at -175.