UFC 280 Oliveira vs. Makhachev October 22 Betting Preview
UFC 280 is set to take place at Yas Island in Abu Dhabi, UAE this weekend. Headlining that event will be a fight for the vacant UFC lightweight belt between former champion Charles Oliveira (33-8) and Islam Makhachev (22-1).
Both men are on impressive winning streaks in the UFC, which makes this even more historic. It is a fight with so much on the line, including legacy and life-changing riches to come with earning the belt on this stage.
This is a great matchup between a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu fighter with elite muay-thai skills and a Dagestani Combat Sambo fighter that has taken the UFC by storm, much like his lifelong friend Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Oliveira will come out of the gates fast with a lot of pressure, walking down Makhachev with a high guard and throwing front kicks to back him up against the fence.
The question is, how long will Makhachev play this striking game until he shoots for a takedown? The pressure of Oliveira will surely make Makhachev feel uncomfortable, so I would expect an early takedown attempt.
Oliveira doesn’t necessarily have elite wrestling, but with a training camp dedicated to it and with his previous submission skills, he is very dangerous for Makhachev. The guard of Oliveira is somewhere literally no one ever wants to be. Makhachev will show something very different with a willingness to be in that position with him.
Oliveira will need to use his submission attempts to create scrambles on the ground with Makhachev so he doesn’t get his legs tangled up against a fence. This is going to be very interesting to see how this fight goes on the ground.
If Oliveira can give himself any space on the ground, he needs to capitalize and finish the fight there or get up and continue to put pressure on Makhachev. A broad statement for how this fight will go is: if the fight stays in the middle of the octagon, Oliveira wins; if it is fought against the fence, then Makhachev will.
Makhachev is the betting favorite over the number one lightweight in the world, with odds at (-167) heading into fight night. Oliveira is the underdog at (+135).
The most interesting prop right now is the over/under 1.5 rounds. At one point, it was favored for this fight to not last 1.5 rounds because of how quickly Oliveira starts. I would say that if this fight goes more than two rounds, the odds shift dramatically more in Makhachev’s favor.
The energy that Oliveira uses early is a big concern if the fight starts going longer than 10 minutes. We know Makhachev will be ready to go for 25 minutes with nonstop wrestling.
The best bet would be this fight is not going to the judges. It is tough to see either of these guys not putting the other away. Makhachev has a lot of similarities to Khabib, but he has been finished in the octagon before. Oliveira knows there is an off-button somewhere on Makhachev.
At the end of the day, this fight is a pick ‘em because it really is an unstoppable force meeting an immovable object. Both men are so full of confidence and momentum, with the pride of their own teams on their backs.
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